Movie Review: A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night

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15 Responses

  1. Avatar Michael M. says:

    Agree that this is really one worth seeking out, but my enthusiasm for it is somewhat tempered by the much better and somewhat similar indie The Babadook, which I think is the best film of 2014 (at least, of those I’ve seen).Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Michael M. says:

      Yay a comment!

      I haven’t seen The Badadook but it also got good reviews. Why did you find it much better?Report

      • Avatar Rufus F. in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        I like to believe that when a post doesn’t get a lot of comments, it means that it was of such a crystalline purity and perfection that nobody could add anything. I’m sticking with that!

        I did have a comment on this post, although it might not add much. Someone mentioned art films on here recently and this:
        I am glad that people are still trying to be daring with plot, story, and conceit and be proud to fail a bit for the sake of being original.
        seems like a pretty good definition of an art film.Report

      • Avatar Saul DeGraw in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        Of course the other answer could be that very few of us has seen the movie 🙂Report

      • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        If you want comments, next time you need to pick an art film that the North Koreans threatened to blow up.Report

      • Avatar Rufus F. in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        Kim Jong-un Walks Home at Night?Report

      • Avatar Sual Degraw in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        @rufus-f @mike-schilling

        Kim Jong-un Dances in the DarkReport

      • Avatar Glyph in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        Speaking of art films, did anyone else see Under the Skin? I just did, still chewing on it. A Girl Walks Home Alone seems like it might have certain similarities (Jarmusch made one not too long ago that might also).

        Since this isn’t MD, in your opinion is there intended political significance to the fact that The Girl has American affectations, and that an industry which sucks fluid to sustain life figures so prominently in the film? I don’t need spoilers, but from your review that sort of stands out.

        The Babadook is def. on my to-see list.

        But I may have to finally watch Her first, keep my ScarJo scifi roll going.Report

      • Avatar Rufus F. in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        I’ve been meaning to see Under the Skin, although the Kubrick comparisons were putting me off. That’s quite a lot to live up to. Nevertheless, Rex Reed panned the film, which means it’s probably pretty good.Report

      • Avatar Sual Degraw in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        @glyph

        I think the film is supposed to be more of a commentary on how women are seen and treated in Iranian society and it is not really about the American film industry.

        I don’t know much in detail but the little I know is that in Iran there is a lot of surface level appearance to keep up with rules set by the Islamic regime but it is very secular underneath and women frequently wear Western clothing under their Chadors (often with Western levels of skimpiness). There are also lots of house parties which are indistinguishable from how young Americans would party especially the middle and upper-classes. Iran was a pretty secular (though tyrannical in different ways) under the Shah.Report

      • Avatar Michael M. in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        @saul-degraw

        The Babadook is astonishingly accomplished, so much so that it is hard to believe it is director Jennifer Kent’s first feature. There’s not a shot wasted or an image that doesn’t resonate and the sound design is effectively creepy and clever. It’s not so much that Kent seems to have thought of everything (though it does seem that she has) as it is that she seems to have such complete mastery of her material that she is able to bend and twist and direct us viewers exactly as she wishes without leaving us feeling manipulated. The story is so gripping and terrifying that I’m not sure I’d necessarily recommend it to all parents — it cuts considerably closer to the bone than most of the psychologically damaged child/parent relationship explorations and examinations of motherhood it comments on, from The Exorcist to Ringu / The Ring, Rosemary’s Baby to The Shining. Essie Davis as the mother turns in a performance worthy of Catherine Deneuve in Repulsion and the kid is scary good. It is just a perfectly realized movie that doesn’t stint on ambition or creativity to get to its perfection.

        I should say it’s not really fair to criticize A Girl Walks Home… because I liked The Babadook better. It’s just that it is rare enough for two assured, visually stylized first features with horror-movie appeal directed by women to be released in the same year, let alone within a month or so of each other, that it is too easy to fall into the trap of “compare/contrast.” I liked The Babadook better than any 2014 film I’ve seen.Report

      • Avatar Michael M. in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        @glyph — Yes to Under the Skin, another of the year’s best, I thought. I read (and loved) the book over a decade ago couldn’t imagine how anyone could make it into a movie, so this struck me as a particular achievement.Report

  2. Avatar Alan Scott says:

    Peter Jackson and every other bang wow maximalist should be forced to watch this movie until they learn that great style can come from minimal budgets and real world locations that don’t require any CGI.

    That seems like an odd and unnecessary dig at a director who is quite talented in finding beauty in real-world locations. It’s not as though every one of his movies has been set in Middle Earth.Report