|Die Frankfurt-Tipp Bewertung:|
|Genre:||Thriller, Mystery, Horror, Drama|
|Laufzeit:||Ca. 99 min.|
|FSK:||From 16 years|
For India Stoker (Mia Wasikowska) her 18th birthday should have been a very special, happy day. But the sudden accidental death of her father Richard (Dermot Mulroney) makes the world of the girl all of a sudden completely dark. Her mother Evie (Nicole Kidman) is now in India, where she only meets rejection and coldness. When her uncle Charlie (Matthew Goode), who has lived abroad for many years, shows up and wants to settle down in the broken family for a longer time, India finally feels abandoned by life. It's all anger and suspicion now. At the same time, however, she realizes that the mysterious Charlie emanates a fascinating charm that not only her mother seems to succumb to. India also feels more and more attracted to her mysterious uncle, not knowing that she is connected to him in a very dark way...
With "Stoker" the celebrated Korean filmmaker Park Chan-Wook delivers his Hollywood debut. Of course, it was to be feared that the "Oldboy" director would have to exchange his sometimes very drastic and unadapted style for a more conventional and mass production under pressure from the US studios. This may also be true in a way, as "Stoker" is much more straightforward than the unusual vampire thriller "Thirst". But the thriller is by no means a good or smooth ironed thriller.
The script for the film comes from actor Wentworth Miller ("Prison Break"), who submitted the script under a pseudonym and in 2010 landed it on the so-called "Black List" of the 10 best still unproduced scripts. Miller's story was inspired by the Hitchcock thriller "In the Shadow of Doubt", to which he pays tribute throughout the story. Yet, despite some small structural similarities, "Stoker" is a very independent work, that starts as a drama, then turns into a mystery thriller, only to culminate in tangible horror.
With a fascinating morbid image aesthetic, gruesomely beautiful shooting motifs and an almost perfect set, Park Chan-Wook establishes an atmosphere a few moments after the opening credits that is very difficult to escape. This captivating mood is supported by the very strong actors, who seem artificial in a great way, but still not artificial. Mia Wasikowska plays her multi-layered role with a mixture of coldness and vulnerability, seduction and insecurity, youthful innocence and sly malice. Her equal is a great Matthew Goode, who in the smart Gary Grant-Look is a shady charmer with very dark sides. The fact that Nicole Kidman remains a bit pale next to the two isn't that tragic, as this fits exactly to her role and fits perfectly into the cleverly constructed story structure.
The movie seems to reveal relatively fast who Uncle Charlie really is, but the story still has some surprises in store, which keep the tension level at a consistently high level until the great finale. With a good pinch of deep black humor and some moments of macabre beauty, even the more conventional scenes of the movie become something very special. Even though there are numerous borrowings from the Œuvre Hitchcocks and other genre representatives, Park Chan-Wook has succeeded in creating a visually, dramaturgically and atmospherically great mystery horror thriller on the basis of Wentworth Miller's script, which fascinates, surprises and entertains in the best way possible. A disturbingly beautiful work that can be warmly recommended to fans of noble and sophisticated genre entertainment. Absolutely worth seeing!]
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