Under the Skin Reviews
If you saw a trailer and thought Under the Skin would be a very sensual movie, I might say that you are close. Alluring might be more accurate, in the same way that 2001: A Space Odyssey is alluring. Kubrick clearly had an influence on director Jonathan Glazer. Firstly, he chose the music of Micachu, which is as jittery and clustered as Ligeti and Penderecki's best works. Daniel Landin's cinematography portrays Johannson's moments of sexual temptation with such sharp lighting and a notable amount of physical space, adding unnerving danger to the perpetual enchantment of this movie. Enchanted as I was, I felt that the scenes of greatest horror had a fundamental flaw: What were the tempted males thinking, in those moments? I refuse to believe that sexual frustration can distract someone from the fact that the room was an enormous open space with zero furniture and faraway walls. I get it, Johannson has sexual appeal. These aliens do not have powers of hypnosis though. Otherwise, they would not need a well-figured alien to tempt individuals to the lab. So how is it that they have no sense of what their environment is? If you are able to suspend your disbelief with greater leniency than myself, you will find these scenes to be wholly effective. Personally, this is a significant part of the story that could have used some explanation.
Similar to Kubrick, Glazer wants to tell a story through imagery. There is nothing wrong with that choice. I like how the progression of Johannson's character -- a very fascinating performance, on her part -- plays with the sound mixing, where her compassion for and understanding of humanity is intertwined with the clarity of individual voices. In some moments, during her drives around the city of Glasgow, Scotland (I think...), she is overwhelmed by the meticulous actions that humans take, progressing from quick cut clips of humans every few seconds to a cluster of actions layered on top of one another. For the most part, whether or not Glazer had let the imagery come from the story, the artsiness works. Pacing: not perfect, but I never felt bored. That may relate to when I began to put the pieces together, meaning that pacing favourability will not be close to universal. I oblige myself to consider that in my rating. In certain stretches of the film, not knowing what is going on can mean one is forced to sit through parts that do not add to the understanding of the plot. Most of the time, I could connect minute moments to my version of the story's theme: Human compassion has greater appeal than physical sexuality, but countless factors can prevent one from receiving compassion.
I believe, that Under the Skin, will be a film that will be studied, debated, and examined for years to come. For those who have read, seen the trailer, and or movie, you already know that it's an artsy fartsy kinda film, that film nerds really get into.
This film doesn't spoon feed you every little detail. Meaning, nothing really feels forced upon you. It lets you (the viewer), come to your own decision, your own thought process, your own beliefs.
In addition, the imagery is amazing. I really like the camera work, and how there were hidden shots. Oh my God, I sound like one of those artsy fartsy film nerds now. I especially loved the creepy score. Such as, when Laura enters the black void with the dark pool.
Casting Scarlett Johansson as an alien humanoid, was a good choice for this film. honestly, Scarlett doesn't say much throughout the film. But she sells her performance well through facial expressions. For example, the way she gazes, and roams at men. How she looks at men with her eyes, and how she seduces these unsuspected men with her cherry red lipstick with a shade of crimson.
My only complaint with the film, is that some parts do drag on a little longer than needed. I believe that is my only complaint because, at times i was confused. Such as, why is she here? Is she hungry for men? Does she have a sinister plan? Fetish? Why Earth? Is she working with that motorcycle man? Searching for a mate? Alien invasion? etc.
Also, I believe this film was inspired by 2001: A Space Odyssey. Mainly, because the film is loaded with themes, headscratchers, metaphors, and leaving us wanting more (especially with the ending).
Many of us, including myself, love to see character development in movies. I personally love how in this film, Laura looks for victims, but she herself becomes a victim later on in the film. Or when Laura kills a man, and later on she meets a hitchhiker, she feels sympathetic towards him, and tries to comfort him by telling him he has beautiful hands.
Similarly, when Laura looks at human beings doing everyday things, she observes and seems enlightened in a way. In my opinion, the director was trying to demonstrate that every being on this planet is an alien in disguise. I also enjoy the other themes, of how mankind views beauty, and how true beauty is underneath us, it's... under the skin (that was a bad pun).
Under the Skin is a very interesting film. I believe that not everyone will enjoy this. But if you are an artsy fartsy film nerd, who loves seeing themes on discovering who we are, what it means to be human, films that make you think, and meditate on, Under the Skin is worth checking out.
This movie it's slow, it's raw and it's atmospheric. Certainly intriguing, it keep me watching, it has some raw elements in the way it's film and it gets surreal in a lot of scenes, but overall it's not boring if you're into this type of films.
half star ??? is for scarlets out of shape naked scene.
how did this film even get made?
I wanted to love this as it was made in Scotland but hated it. I should get a Duke of Edinburgh award for watching it to the end. don't say I didn't warn you.
it just goes to show that the over educated tomato ??? review luvvies are so far out of touch with the normal working man, when they gave this movie over 80%
At first glance, I was not enamored with what was under Writer-Director Jonathan Glazer's film "Under the Skin". I was impatient with its slow pacing, but the skinny is that it never left my mind upon viewing, so I had to give this skin a second try, and I am so glad I did. The movie stars an excellent Scarlett Johansson as The Female; yea you got it, she is definitely The Female! Anyways, The Female preys upon Scottish men. She entraps them and literally sinks them into fatality. But this is not a female serial killer movie. There could be a wide array of interpretations on the narrative of "Under the Skin", and I was impressed in how Glazer gave us that grand arena to come up with our own conclusions on why The Female does what she does. I am not going to reveal more of the narrative, because I would be "under the fin" of you reading my review. Anyways, you have to be patient to see what's "Under the Skin", but I think you will be pleasantly pleased.