Featuring a dynamic lead performance from Rebecca Hall, Andrew Semans’ Resurrection might be a little to out there for some viewers, but once you get on the film’s wavelength, viewers will be greatly rewarded.
Margaret (Hall) has a great job and a great life with her daughter Abbie (Grace Kaufman), who is about to go to college. She is unmarried and comfortable with a casual arrangement with her co-worker Peter (Michael Esper). Everything is falling into place.
One day at a work conference, she notices someone who looks just like David (Tim Roth), a mysterious man from her past. Trying to endure, Margaret continually sees David in public places. As she begins to unravel, she must confront her demons to protect her daughter from the horrors she has long suppressed.
I don’t want to give too much plot away, because of the unexpected directions it takes. Needless to say, David and Margaret have a past and it involves some diabolical elements you aren’t ready for.
I cannot state this enough: Rebecca Hall is remarkable. The choices she makes in this film are all perfect and seem singular to what she can do. Even as something as deepening the pitch of her voice is monumentally powerful. She has a lengthy mid-film monologue that ranks among the best things she has ever done. Hall is able to ground Margaret in reality while questioning her own sanity about what is actually going on. It’s one of the performances of the year.
Roth is pure slime in a deeply difficult role. His charisma is necessary to make this man believable, even when the story stretches believability. HIs evil banality is essential for the film to work and he pulls it off beautifully. Kaufman gets to play the innocent bystander wondering what the hell is going on. In context, her worries are well-founded, but she can come across as grating.
Semans has announced himself as a fresh new filmmaker who constantly keeps you on your toes. Additionally, the film has a keen visual eye without trying too hard. Some of the haunting visuals from cinematographer Wyatt Garfield jump off the screen. The film goes in such wildly different directions, it certainly never boring.
The ending will be divisive for lots of people, but I found it cathartic. Much like the rest of the film, the last 15 minutes will open your jaw and keep you on the edge of your seat. It’s the only part of the film that breaks the barrier of realism, but the film was so patient with that actual reveal, I was enthralled.
Fans of white-knuckle psychological thrillers will be in for a treat. Go in as blind as possible and let Hall and the film mesmerize you. You definitely won’t forget it.
Resurrection is playing in theaters on Friday, July 29 and will be available on VOD on August 5th
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