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Hi Bryan Here…
This little gem of a film is exactly that. Remarkable and nail biting as all hell. I knew very little walking into ‘Martha Marcy May Marlene’, but after its viewing, I knew I witnessed something special and spectacular. The less you know about the film going in the better, so I will try to keep this review light on spoilers. Bu tI just walked away from this film with a new hope for filmmaking and storytelling. With so much crap out there these days, it was so refreshing to see this film. ‘Martha Marcy May Marlene’ was original, beautifully shot, tense, scary, darkly romantic, and very well acted. I wish I could buy a ticket for the world to see this movie.
The film follows Martha played by Elizabeth Olsen (the Olsen twins younger and amazing actress sister) who secretly flees from a cult in the Catskill Mountains and has been missing from her family for over two years. Once seemingly safe, Martha phones her sister Lucy (Sarah Paulson) to ask her to come rescue her. Once Martha enters her sister’s and sister’s husband’s home, Martha slowly tries to easy back in to some kind of normalcy, but it proves strenuous. Martha’s paranoia gets the best of her and causes turmoil between her sister and her. But is her paranoia legit? I’ll leave that to you to find out. The leader of the cult is Patrick (John Hawkes) and is a perplexing individual who is charming and kind, yet sadistic and unnerving at every moment. It’s like at any moment, he will strike and cause you nightmares and harm. As for Elizabeth Olsen, she might be one of the best actresses to come into the limelight in quite some time. I couldn’t believe how good she was. Elizabeth has a few movies coming out with in the next year I cannot wait to see her in more films. She is gold. I had the opportunity to interview both Elizabeth Olsen and the director Sean Durkin who is a young filmmaker and it seems they had quite the time making this film. One of the questions I asked them was how true to life was this story and did the story itself come from any particular incident from their lives. Much to my pleasure and to me being terrified, Durkin said he had a very close friend where he drew this story from. That is some horrific stuff. Sean is definitely a director to watch out for. Very few filmmakers can make me sit on the edge of my seat and sweat during a film. Sean is one of the few people who has done that. From the 1st frames of the film till the very last frame of the film, I was nervous. And the relationship between Martha and Lucy was very real. The way they played off each other in that their love and hate for each other just flowed ever so easily. You really think they were real sisters. The acting was phenomenal from Olsen and Paulson. And I just personally loved how I came to know how Martha’s full name became to be. So smart. I highly recommend seeing ‘Martha Marcy May Marlene’. It will be one of the better films you have seen in quite some time. I look forward to seeing much more from Elizabeth and Sean in the future. EXCELLENT film.