This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Devan’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
Whoa boy! Lotta feelings coming outta this one. The overall resounding feeling I have in finally having seen this is: I had fun! Of the nominations for Best Picture I've watched so far this year, this one was easily the most fun. I've been told by a number of people that they thought I'd like this one and now that I've seen it I can say they were right. I did like it. With that said, I do kind of wish this had gone further.
This was really vibrant, colorful, and just watching it was like listening to someone tell an actually engaging story. Even so, for a revenge story I felt a bit underwhelmed by the revenge. Is it so wrong that with reality being as it is, I wanted to see something a little more daring in terms of getting back and, quite literally, sticking it to the man?
In the end, we have to see our protagonist killed by the same man who is her late best friend's attacker. While the generated feeling of anger and helplessness we as the audience feel as we see her smothered before us is no doubt intentional and poignant given the subject material and story being told, it makes the "resolution" and "reckoning" the characters receive in the end feel like next to nothing. Why, I can't help but wonder, even in a fictional story can we not see her prevail?
If, in the end, we were going to watch all these people "get theirs," why couldn't it have been at her hand? Why the decision to make the "heroes," so to speak, boil down to the police, who never seemed to be especially helpful when it came to what happened to Nina to begin with? (I realize of course that this frustration is likely all intentional, but still. It doesn't make it feel any more necessary for the story)
Essentially, at the end of it all, maybe I was too hopeful I was going to watch some gross guys get what was coming to them in a morbid way. But I mean when your opening sequence features the protagonist walking home with blood spatter on her, am I really in the wrong for wanting some of that?
Still, this was (overall) a satisfying watch. Great style, some really cool cast, and a killer soundtrack. I just wanted more.