Nocturnal Animals had some early Oscar buzz but it fizzled at the box office and reviews were mixed. And rightly so. This is a very weird, rather cold movie. And yet oddly compelling at times. The acting is superb. Amy Adams is truly excellent. She should be Oscar nominated for Arrival, but she shows her versatility with this film too. The initial opening of the film credits is wacky. I truly thought, “What the heck is going on?” Turns out it was an art opening and Amy is the gallery owner. However, she and her husband (played by Armie Hammer – just there to look awesome) have a troubled marriage and they are living the façade of luxury while drowning in debt. It’s tough to maintain appearance in the fancy crowd. Amy does weary well and we feel how jaded she’s become.
She gets a book delivery – an early copy from her former husband, played by Jake Gyllenhaal. As she reads her “disguised story” In flashback we see them meet, fall in love, defy her parents, exude exuberance for life, and then she screws it up with Armie. Is this book revenge? There’s definitely a lot of twisted junk going on. The acting is really good and I liked Jake a lot. He’s the sensitive poor writer that the parents do not think are worthy of their daughter. Well snobbery can backfire.
Tom Ford, the designer, directed this film. It is quite posed with beautiful people, but it’s cold. Perhaps that’s the point. I can’t say I liked this film – not at all. I can’t recommend it. I know I see some weird crap…some of it I can give a thumbs up. Nocturnal Animals is ultimately a thumbs down. Consider this a public service review. I am saving you. You are welcome.