Hot Take: Dark comic vibes pulse through a dramatic thriller with quirky, eccentric characters that jabs at you until the third act then BLAM!
Ever feel like you’ve had enough? Ruth (Melanie Lynskey) hits her breaking point after her house is broken into, her laptop is stolen, her depression medication is lifted and, worst of all, her grandmother’s silverware was taken. After getting nowhere with the cops, she’s set off by one more act of violation when she finally catches which neighbor (Elijah Wood) keeps allowing their dog to poop in her yard. After confronting him, she takes to the neighborhood to ask if anyone has seen anything unusual. Eventually, she comes back to the same neighbor — Tony — who seems to be the only one interested in her case.
After her canvas of the neighborhood, she receives a ping on her app that her laptop is active and has an address of its location. When she calls the police and they refuse to look into the address, she turns to Tony to be her back up as she goes to confront the person who has her laptop. At the house, Ruth confronts the man outside and with some force from Tony, they end up inside. Eventually, it is discovered that the laptop is there but the group had purchased it from a consignment shop and the silver was not to be found.
As the story progresses, in Ruth’s quest for respect from others, Ruth slowly loses hers which gets lost in an obsession for a confrontation with the person who committed the original act that let her feeling violated. The movie’s choices are, at times, even a little unexpected which brings for a pleasant surprise. Most films we get these days have a by-the-numbers plot. Writer/director Macon Blair must have learned a thing or two from childhood friend Jeremy Saulnier (Blue Rain, Green Room) in coloring outside the lines as Blair’s film takes some expectedly mundane scenes and quickly turns them on their ear. The third act has a huge payoff and I don’t feel at home in this world anymore. is an unexpected treat.
“Spoiler Free” Pros
- That’s a Go For Sundance
I don’t feel at home in this world anymore was the winner of the Dramatic U.S. Grand Jury prize. Previous winners included The Birth of a Nation, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Whiplash and Fruitvale Station. That’s a fairly good recent run for this award. Look forward to next year’s winner.
- Melanie Lynskey is Quite the Character
Lynskey is a self-described character actor and has a familiar face as she has been in a number of films over the years. In this film, her performance is subtle but stands out as excellent in a starring role where she’s typically more used in a supporting role.
- “Netflix Original” Legitimized
Like it’s wing of very successful television originals, Netflix’s offering here provides further evidence that Netflix is a real player when it comes to original content.
“Spoiler Free” Cons
- The Coen Brothers Did It!
There are times where you’re going to feel like you’re watching a Coen Brothers film. That’s not a terrible thing but it digs into those earlier praises of originality and coloring outside the lines as it could just be the borrowing of another person’s coloring book.