Sawyer Valentini has just relocated from Boston to Pennsylvania to get away from a gentleman stalker. When she goes to see psychiatric help, she unwittingly signs herself in for voluntary 24-hour commitment to a behavioural centre. As she tries to convince the staff that it’s a mistake, she inevitably ends up staying later as her behaviour raises some red flags. Doesn’t one of those nurses look familiar..?
I was really excited for this film – I love a good psychological thriller. Having done psychology at school, it’s always been something that fascinated me. Plus who doesn’t love Claire Foy?! Inevitably, I was hopeful.
Unfortunately, on this occasion, I was let down. The story was no where near as strong as I had originally thought. *SPOILERS* I feel that it would have been a better story if her stalker hadn’t actually been there and she was having flashbacks/was seeing things.
The first three quarters of the film is someone bland. I considered leaving after the first quarter but things very gradually started to pick up when the stalker was introduced. The last quarter of the film is definitely everything I asked for, gripping, entertaining and left me on the edge of my seat. The problem is, I’m not sure that that was enough to carry the rest of the film.
This film was also filmed entirely on an iPhone!! Whilst that’s incredible to consider its not hugely great in practice. I know that many will say otherwise and whilst I appreciate the artist aspects behind it and I commend the director for doing it, but I just can’t get behind it. I found the picture too grainy, it gave a weird perspective and it didn’t give off that cinematic experience.
TLDR; Whilst I cannot fault Claire Foy, I must admit I was very disappointed with the final outcome of this film.
There’s not a whole lot for me to say about Unsane, other than how disappointed I was with how it turned out. As you may know, I’m somewhat into the horror genre, ever since my school days where I’d stay up way past my bed time to see whatever guff there was on offer (typically 28 days later, or Dawn of the Dead). Needless to say, Unsane looked to have a lot of promise behind it, with a strong psychological aspect and the wonderful Claire Foy leading, I was looking forward to it.
If there’s anything that Unsane has going for it, it’s the brilliant acting. Foy puts on an incredibly real and hard hitting performance through, as do the rest of the cast, and out of that bears some real dramatic and high tension scenes throughout. That being said, I found this film’s entire execution to be weak, and lacking any sort of direction. Filmed entirely on an IPhone, Unsane feels more like a university film project by some edgy teen than something I’d expect to see in any big name cinema, and whilst some may call this artistic, I feel like it detracts from the film on a whole.
It also feels rather dumbed down when the main premise of the film (that she keeps seeing her stalker) is completely robbed of any psychological edge when it turns out that she actually is seeing him and that it’s not all just in her head. This all comes to a rather stuttered and frankly messy conclusion which felt more like the writers had ran out of time (or ideas) than anything planned.
All in all, not really worth the time or effort.