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The Little Stranger

  • 12-06-2018 6:03pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 2,249 ✭✭✭ metaoblivia


    Lenny Abrahamson's latest and he's reunited with my favorite actor, Domhnall Gleeson (plus Ruth Wilson, Will Poulter and Charlotte Rampling). I'm really looking forward to this - I love a good mystery/ghost story.

    The first trailer was released yesterday and the release date is Aug 31:


Comments

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 27,237 CMod ✭✭✭✭ johnny_ultimate


    Probably the most satisfied I've been with one of Abrahamson's films to date. Don't go in expecting a horror film - it's pitched somewhere that's not quite Gothic horror (although there's elements of that) and not quite costume drama (it's instead like a 'decades later...' follow-up to your usual example of the genre).
    The house is haunted
    , yes, but not necessarily the way you expect. Instead it's sort of a reflection on class and wealth, and the toxic effect it can have on people. It's about one obsessed man, chasing dreams from childhood regardless of the impact it has on others. Ruth Wilson gives a pretty extraordinary performance as a woman holding it together while the fragility of the life she's lived comes into clear, startling view.

    I still don't think Abrahamson has much of a distinctive, individual style to write home about, but it is a handsome film - the house itself is captured in all its decaying glory, like there's a layer of mist and/or grime over everything. He well knows when to just let the performances do what they need to do. It's a slow and unassuming film for much of its runtime, but when it comes into focus it's an impressively different take on what happens behind closed doors in a creepy old house.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,020 ✭✭✭ eviltimeban


    Getting a bit of a "The Others" vibe, would it be of the same ilk?


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 27,237 CMod ✭✭✭✭ johnny_ultimate


    Getting a bit of a "The Others" vibe, would it be of the same ilk?

    Very different films! As said, I recommend not approaching it as a straight horror (gothic or otherwise) film - while it certainly references and plays off some of the genre’s tropes (overtly in a handful of scenes), it does so IMO to steer the viewer down a different path entirely. There are a few scenes that hint at a
    supernatural presence... personally, though, I think a few strong hints in the way these scenes are presented suggested that everything actually had a grounded, less mysterious explanation.


  • Registered Users Posts: 75,456 ✭✭✭✭ JP Liz V1


    I did think generic haunted house movie from the trailer, Downton Abbey gothic horror :p


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,586 ✭✭✭ take everything


    Thinking about seeing this as well.
    The premise sounds really interesting.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 8,493 ✭✭✭ Goodshape


    Good, but not great. I've been a big fan of Abrahamson's work so far but this felt like a bit of a misstep.

    Domhnall Gleeson was a little distracting in the main role, unfortunately. Wasn't quite buying it. Maybe that's just me.

    Ruth Wilson and Will Poulter were fantastic though. The whole thing picked up when they were on screen.

    But ultimately the pacing, tone, and style of the film just left me wanting. Felt like it should or could have been a more interesting film.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,374 Warper


    Wouldnt recommend this at all, it crawls along with little or nothing happening throughout the entire film, quite simply a boring film


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 27,237 CMod ✭✭✭✭ johnny_ultimate


    Goodshape wrote: »
    Domhnall Gleeson was a little distracting in the main role, unfortunately. Wasn't quite buying it. Maybe that's just me.

    Wasn’t a fan either I must admit. He always give the impression that he’s trying to act*, rather than fitting snugly into the role like Wilson or Rampling do.

    *a very generous reading would be that suits the character, but I think that may be giving a bit too much credit :pac:


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,966 ✭✭✭ homerun_homer


    I enjoyed watching this film but it is ultimately a let down by the time the credits roll. Understandably you can blame the source material but it just felt there was no pay off. Ruth Wilson and Will Poulter were fantastic in it, and I also agree that Domhnall never blends into a film easily. He was understated and not OTT which was a plus but I just wanted him to crack that little bit more as the film progressed.

    The SPOILER]poltergeist plot, or haunted house element was a bit too obvious to me throughout to be directly connected to Faraday and something that seemingly was happening as a result of him.[/SPOILER] Maybe it's obvious to everyone else as well, but it seemed like this was supposed to be a little bit of a surprise. It's just shame that the ending didn't pack a punch.


  • Moderators, Arts Moderators, Regional Abroad Moderators Posts: 10,605 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Fysh


    Caught this tonight and really liked it; it's unhurried in its pace but that makes it more effective as a character study. I actually found this one of Gleeson's better performances; having said that, he's outshone by Wilson and Poulter whenever they're on screen.

    Regarding the ending, it worked for me in that the film never really felt all that plot-focused. I think, as johnny mentioned, the film allows either interpretation -
    it can be a film about a haunted house, or a film about people living in a house they believe to be haunted, and works in either way
    . The very last shot caught me by surprise mainly because the film had been so blatant in setting it up that I just assumed it was misdirection :D

    I also love that it can be read as a protest against stupidly oversized mansions for two and a half people to potter about in and a call for more socialised housing access ;)


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  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 17,929 Mod ✭✭✭✭ CatFromHue


    Just back from it now, surprisingly there were quite a few others in the cinema watching it too.

    Regarding the ending
    did Faraday kill Carolyn, or Faraday's poltergeist? The scene when he's talking to the other Doctor in the pub about sub conscious things in the mind creating poltergeists, then the night she dies he pars up the car and freaks out in it, and then at the end there's young Faraday at the top of the balcony where Carolyn fell from. Young Faraday is the little stranger

    Very well acted and well made, but one of those films that the subject matter I found unsettling, though I'm sure that was by design.

    Ruth Wilson is gorgeous too :o


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,249 ✭✭✭ metaoblivia


    I started this thread and then never came back to share my thoughts!
    I liked this film. I like a slow burning half ghost story, half character study. As much as I love Domhnall, I do think he was a touch out of place here. This role was definitely a stretch for him. He wasn't bad though - he was good while the rest of the cast was great.

    I interpreted the end as
    Faraday's poltergeist causing the trouble and acting as the "little stranger" in the house, and I don't think Faraday had any conscience understanding of what was happening.

    It's not a movie that leaves you feeling very good because I think it's shown that Faraday has a lot of potential to be a good doctor, and yet
    his bitterness at both the past and his social standing destroys the family and his own potential, and he's unable to see that.


  • Registered Users Posts: 56 ✭✭✭ Moznips


    Spoiler Alert
    watched this last night and i really enjoyed it but one issue was unanswered for me. How did little girl Susie die? Did Faraday cause this to happen? in the flashback you see young Faraday in the hallway and i get that that's when 'the house' consumed him. he steals a rose from a picture frame and the little girl Susie sees this. Then his mothers spanks him. Did his rage or embarrassment cause Susie to die? she looked healthly enough in the clip and yet she died that night?????


  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 17,929 Mod ✭✭✭✭ CatFromHue


    In the book Suki dies by Diphtheria and in the film I thought that the way they spoke about how she died was of natural causes from a disease or virus that commonly killed children back then. I didn't get the vibe that she dies in mysterious circumstances anyway.
    What happened in with Suki blocking young Faraday in the photo and the way she looked at him when he was caught breaking the bit of plaster in the house definitely affected young, and old, Faraday imo


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,933 ✭✭✭✭ TerrorFirmer


    Just watched this last night and really enjoyed it, much better than I expected given some of the lukewarm reviews. Superb performances bring a generally unremarkable script to life, I think.

    Gleeson was great but that's expected - ditto for Ruth Wilson - but it was really Will Poulter who surprised me with such a convincing performance.

    Film looks great as well. I can see why some people wouldn't like it, but it's definitely one of the better films I've seen in the past few months.


  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 17,929 Mod ✭✭✭✭ CatFromHue


    Guillermo del Toro liked it anyway, he tweeted this the other day

    https://twitter.com/RealGDT/status/1168579532934139904


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