Take a inch of Hitchcock, add a sip of Lynch and mix with a tea spoon of Kubrick. This is the perfect recipe for the seductive, enchanting, toxic new Tom Ford-s thriller Nocturnal Animals.
Starting from Tony and Susan by Austin Wright, for his second feature after A Single Man, Ford puts together life essential emotions: fear, jealousy, wickedness, madness, betrayal,…and an outstanding cast. All mixed with “tailor-made” spaces and obviously, costumes.
Nocturnal Animals opens with a catchy sequence made in a slow-motion festival of podgy Americana. Here we meet an extraordinary beautiful woman, Sara (perfect, as usual, Amy Adams who is at the London Film Festival also with Arrival) and, pretty soon, also her cheating husband Hutton (Armie Hammer, at the London Film Festival also with Closing Gala Movie Free Fire and soon in the Italian movie Mine).
They live in an elegant glass-cage house in Los Angeles but, if financially they are for sure wealthy, their marriage is falling apart.
Susan is an unsatisfied art-gallerist who, one day, completely out of the blue, receives a pack from her ex-hubby Edward (Jake Gyllenhall) whom she hasn’t heard from nearly 20 years. As we’ll see in few flashbacks from their past, Edward is a lovely, sensitive boy from her Texas hometown.
The paper-cut on Susan finger while she opens the package is just a premonition of what we are entering. Inside there is Edward manuscript. The book is dedicated to Susan, his “nocturnal animal”, as the title of the book he is going to publish.
Edward’s story is a bloody violent tale set in….Texas. Here we find Susan alter-ego Laura ( smartly portraited by Isla Fisher, often confused by people for Amy Adams), Edward alter-ego played by Jake Gyllenhall himself, the violent Ray (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and the out if the lines with nothing to lose detective Andes (Michael Shannon).
Sooner the two worlds collide and more Susan falls in the book plot as a modern and dark Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland; more Ford’s camera focuses on her tangible emotions expressed in small facial gestures; giving us the opportunity to see, once again, all Amy Adams extraordinary talent.
“When you love someone, you work it out. You don’t just throw it away” (Edward).
UK release: 4th November 2016
Italy release: 17th November 2016