Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan



Sometimes it just all goes wrong. The director, Park Chan-Wook, was going for a Hitchcock suspense movie, but he paced it horribly. It was never quite clear to me what was going on until near the end—and that’s okay, I don’t mind trying to figure it out—but this was just a lot of too-slow dialogue, mysterious expressions on the part of all concerned, and just plain annoying people.

Mia Wasikowska is a very strange 18-year-old who adores her daddy, a man who took her hunting all her life, shooting at birds and mounting them. Mom is Nicole Kidman, a drunk who never really connected with her. Right at the first Dad is killed in a fiery car crash, and at the funeral an uncle Mia had never even heard of (Matthew Goode) shows up. He’s weird and alarming from the very first. He is Uncle Charlie, which immediately rings a bell to a film buff like me as the murdering Joseph Cotton in Hitch’s Shadow of a Doubt. We pretty quickly find out that he is a murderer, but his real background is not revealed until a lot later. Nicole falls for him but Mia resists him, until he kills a rapist for her, and she helps. Later, in the shower, she masturbates to the memory of the murder.

SPOILER: … don’t waste your time, but if you insist on seeing this, stop reading here. Charlie was put in an insane asylum when he was about six, because he buried his little brother alive because his older brother, who would be Mia’s father, was paying too much attention to the little boy. He is released, and when he finds out his bro doesn’t want a fucking nut like him around his family, he kills him and arranges the crash. He also kills Mia’s aunt, and for reasons I didn’t get, kills the housekeeper, too, and puts her in the freezer. Mia finds the corpse … and does nothing. It’s looking like a match of psychos made in hell, until she kills him as he is trying to kill her mother. She leaves, and for no reason I can see, kills a sheriff who pulls her over for speeding. What a godawful mess this movie is. I suppose she got a taste for killing, but who cares? Not me.