Future Voices: Film review - Nightcrawler

Jake Gyllenhaal as Lou Bloom, and Rene Russo.

Jake Gyllenhaal as Lou Bloom, and Rene Russo. - Credit: PA

The plot of Nightcrawler focuses around the shady underworld of news broadcasts, and the lengths some will go to in order to capture the perfect crime on film, for both professional and financial gain.

Its style is reminiscent of Drive, Dexter and American Psycho, fusing elements of them beautifully and adding its own highly original spin, exploring an often overlooked aspect of life. Mixing deliciously dark humour with exhilarating suspense and culminating in an unbelievably intense finale, Nightcrawler is an incredibly enjoyable and intelligent crime thriller with strong elements of black comedy.

Jake Gyllenhaal's portrayal of Lou Bloom, who is most likely a genuine psychopath, is one of the best of not only his career, but of film history in general. He is a truly magnetic screen presence, managing to simultaneously be charming, and yet absolutely reprehensible and highly unnerving.

Gyllenhaal conveys that something is 'off' about Lou with the subtlety of his performance, like his fake smiles and calculated manner of speech without anything having to be told to the audience through exposition, which is a true testament to his skill as an actor.

Although the central performance is strong enough to carry the film single-handedly, it is the script that truly steals the show - establishing uncomfortable character dynamics that effectively drive the plot forwards, building tension masterfully, and creating unsettling and memorable quotes, from Lou's motivational words, to his deeply unpleasant attempts at threatening and blackmailing his boss, played phenomenally by Rene Russo, into beginning a relationship with him.


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The dialogue creates consistently pitch-perfect characterisation that allows the audience to condemn the lead characters actions, but simultaneously empathise with and understand the motivation behind them.

In conclusion, Nightcrawler is an outstanding film with gorgeous visuals that use city lights to their full advantage, fantastic acting, a superb script, and is definitely my favourite film of 2014. I highly suggest everyone who is interested in Nightcrawler to see it immediately.

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Age classification: 15

Summer Sapiano, 15, Taverham.

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