This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
benfriedman’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
Some people just have nothing to lose. Cassandra is one of them
[THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS]
Much talk has been made about the last 20 or so minutes of Promising Young Woman. So many have said that the ending ruins what could have been a great movie. For me, this is a wonderful film elevated by an even more incredible final act.
Cassandra was not simply murdered. She was destroyed. Erased from existence. Al and Joe could have easily just taken the stereotypical route and dumped her in a lake or buried her body. Instead, Emerald Fennell chose to have them cremate her. It is disgustingly powerful. Women accused of witchcraft were often burned to ashes. They were sometimes independent from the institution of domesticity. They were sometimes thought to have lured men into traps.
The term 'witch hunt' has been depleted of the weight it once carried. I remember a few years ago when a number of pundits claimed that the Me Too movement was just a witch hunt. Brett Kavanaugh comes to mind and I can only assume that Christine Blasey Ford's story is one of many that inspired Fennell.
The theme of memory is at the core of the film. Cassandra's recollections of Nina are what drove her to fight back. In the end, this promising young woman with nothing to lose turned out to be a winner.