Watching "Stoker"
Published on March 26, 2013 by Sara Foss

Over at the DG, I review the new movie "Stoker."

Here's an excerpt:

"For a certain type of moviegoer, 'Stoker' is one of the most anticipated movies of the year.

A stylish Gothic thriller, the film marks the English-language debut of Park Chan-wook, the Korean auteur behind the cult hit 'Old Boy' and the bloody and haunting 2009 vampire film 'Thirst.' Chan-wook is a boundary pusher, and his films are often extremely visceral — violent, sexually provocative and emotionally raw.

On the surface, 'Stoker' is a little more buttoned up and restrained than Chan-wook’s previous films, telling the story of a teenage girl named India whose mysterious Uncle Charlie moves into the family mansion after her father is killed in an automobile accident. But there are strong emotions roiling beneath the surface, and the film builds to a thrillingly deranged conclusion — perhaps not quite as deranged as the final scenes in 'Old Boy' and 'Thirst,' but certainly in the same ballpark.

The film centers opens just after India (Mia Wasikowska) has learned of her father’s death; at his funeral, she notices a handsome young man watching the proceedings from a hill. This handsome young man turns out to be Uncle Charlie (Matthew Goode), who charms her frosty mother (Nicole Kidman) and makes himself at home. Mia takes an immediate dislike to Charlie; she didn’t know that she had an uncle, and regards him warily. Charlie is friendly, but we know from the opening scenes that there’s something wrong with him, although we don’t know quite what, and that he poses a threat. India is also a bit odd: Her heightened sense of hearing enables her to hear conversations and sounds that nobody else can, and she has no close friends. Her only close relationship was with her dead father (played in flashbacks by Dermot Mulroney), who taught her to hunt."

Click here to read the whole thing.

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