Macclesfield Express - - MACCLESFIELD PEOPLE -

Our film re­viewer James Burgess is a 26 year-old Per­for­mance, Drama and Theatre grad­u­ate. The for­mer Fal­li­b­roome High School pupil has at­tended the BAFTA Film Awards in Lon­don ev­ery year since 2009, meet­ing stars in­clud­ing Dame Helen Mir­ren, Chris­tian Bale and Emma Thomp­son, James lives on St Ives Close in Mac­cles­field. You can visit his web­site at www.jab­film­re­views.

Seam­lessly in­ter­weav­ing three sep­a­rate time-frames, it tells the present story of Su­san (Amy Adams; glacially ter­rific) an ex­tremely priv­i­leged but un­ful­filled LA gallery owner, who pos­sesses the tit­u­lar man­u­script from her ex-hus­band Ed­ward (Jake Gyl­len­haal, rarely hav­ing been bet­ter).

As she be­gins to read, the plot of the novel be­comes the film’s cen­tral nar­ra­tive: a gritty, mur­der­ous neo-noir with Texan drawl and ter­ri­fy­ingly un­re­lent­ing ni­hilis­tic an­tag­o­nists – led by a ter­rific Aaron Tay­lor-John­son.

Su­san also re­mem­bers gloss­ily des­per­ate flash­backs of when her and Ed­ward were to­gether. These three por­tions are per­fectly jux­ta­posed against each other in Sea­mus McGar­vey’s peer­less cin­e­matog­ra­phy. The vac­u­ous lac­quer of the hol­low present con­not­ing the fu­til­ity of ex­cess; the fuzzy, dap­pled past, and the an­tithe­sis, with the ab­ject bru­tal­ity of the ap­par­ent fic­tion...

Ut­terly strik­ing, its Hitch­cock­ian ref­er­ences are fiendishly clever, from mo­tel signs and graph­ic­matched show­ers, to Abel Korzeniowski’s evoca­tively Her­man­nesque score. Laura Lin­ney has a ter­rific, aged-up cameo, in a sharp, propul­sive, height­ened cau­tion­ary tale that’s black-hearted and will stick to your psy­che.

Amy Adams as Su­san Mor­row in Noc­tur­nal An­i­mals

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