14A, violent scenes, mature content.
Dir: William Oldroyd.
US, 2023, 97 min.
Thomasin McKenzie, Anne Hathaway.
“There’s not a spare millimetre of fat on the lean and well-oiled muscle of William Oldroyd’s noir-inflected tale of obsession… From impressive visual storytelling to its evocation of the 1960s, taut plotting and its central performances [it] runs through its psychological thriller beats with dark humour and style… Eileen is going through the motions of a dead-end existence in snowy Massachusetts. Her days revolve around working as a secretary at the local juvenile boys prison before swapping out her retired cop father’s two empty bottles of liquor for fresh ones… Things change with the arrival of new prison shrink Rebecca Saint John. The older woman’s sharp suits and perfect hair and make-up are every inch the femme fatale and the polar opposite of Eileen’s mousy look… Rebecca begins to take an interest in the case of inmate Lee Polk, who has killed his own policeman father, at the same time as sparking up a friendship with Eileen that will soon become an obsession for the younger woman… Full of deliciously dark surprises, this is also a film to be savoured for its craft… Oldroyd attacks with a pace that makes his plot twists more shocking and shows an economy that harks back to the golden age of noir.” —Amber Wilkinson, Screendaily