You might not have heard of Stoker, and that’s why I write this blog.
Stoker is Oldboy and The Handmaiden director Chan-wook Park’s first English language film, it is written by Wentworth Miller (the star of Prison Break).
Stoker stars Nicole Kidman, Matthew Goode and Mia Wasikowska, who are all on excellent form and the film is further proof that Kidman has a keen eye for a gem. For someone with a cast iron A List status, Nicole rocks up in way more under the radar, non-mainstream movies than you might assume. Only now you won’t assume that now because I’ve told you. You’re welcome.
That’s the nitty gritty, now here’s where I gush.
Every bit of Stoker oozes attention to detail. Every frame is jam packed with intricacy, every syllable scrutinised and most ear catching of all is the sound design. It’s not often (never) I’ve been watching a film and taking in how great the sound design is, but the Stoker team really blow it out of the water; it’s astonishing.
Entrancing, psycho-sexual and darkly funny, a wealthy family are grieving the death of their father when his estranged brother shows up. Daughter India (Wasikowska) has her suspicions about this new family member, who her mother seems drawn to, but also has deep-rooted problems of her own. Nature over nurture is at the very heart of Stoker, as mysteries are teasingly revealed.
Beautiful and dangerous, enticing and violent, Stoker deliciously flirts with all genres at varying points.
Perhaps the biggest compliment I can pay the film is that you never know which way Stoker is going to go. It feels timeless, both in its setting and in longevity as a piece of entertainment. Exceptional film making.
Despite presenting as merely gorgeous, Stoker is a work of art you’ll always see something new in- there’s a huge amount going on in it. I still find new beauty in it, several viewings in. Sure it is glossy and good to look at, but behind that there’s real depth.
The danger hides in that deception. I love it. 9/10