An old school film reel drawn by artist Dean Nelson.
Artwork by Dean Nelson (https://www.instagram.com/sneak_ecloud/)

What begins as a lonely, unwell girl getting her deserved comeuppance, turns into a borderline ridiculous revenge plot.


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Director(s) Assaf Bernstein
Written By Assaf Bernstein
Date Released 10/12/2018
Genre(s) Thriller
Good If You Like Revenge Movies

Random Nudity

Girls Behaving Badly

Psychological Thrillers

Noted Cast
Maria/ Airam India Eisley
Dan Jason Isaacs
Lily Penelope Mitchell
Mark John C. MacDonald
Amy Mira Sorvino
Sean Harrison Gilbertson

Summary (Ending on 2nd Page)

18-year-old Maria isn’t doing too well. While not anorexic, she has been dropping weight year after year and doesn’t sleep well. Part of it deals with a very critical father, Dan, a plastic surgeon, and her life outside the home. Her friend Lily is inconsistent, even threatened by her sometimes, and a boy named Mark bullies her openly.

This leaves her often alone, but luckily, there is Airam. Someone who appears in Maria’s reflection and promises her freedom from her pain. However, what at first may seem like freedom is a trap.

Highlights

Airam’s Takeover, At First

I cannot say enough how satisfying it was for Airam to get revenge on Maria’s behalf on Lily and Mark. Despite what happens when she does, you will be on her side and find yourself yelling, “THAT’S WHAT YOU GET!” For while Lily’s crime was being passive aggressive, and Mark a bully of sorts, if you dealt with either, you almost feel like you get to live vicariously. Especially since, with watching Maria go through hell, you just want to see her no longer play the victim but be the victor. Particularly since Maria doesn’t present a single example of why someone would treat her so cruelly, the worst thing she does that can affect other people is smoke in public places.

Criticism

It’s Like Amy Was Just Forgotten About

For reasons explained towards the end, there is a lot of focus between Eisley’s characters and Dan. He is the dad who has hurt her deeply and seemingly isn’t all that remorseful about it. However, when it comes to Amy, while she helps us understand Airam’s rage, as an individual, she doesn’t provide much. Even as Airam tries to wake her up from her stupor. If anything, it seems that clips her at the knees and makes it so all she can explain is why things end the way they do in the film.

On The Fence

When Airam Began To Take Things Too Far

Naturally, when one character is violent towards another, there is a line before you cannot justify it. What happens to Mark is justifiable. Lily? Well, that was an accident. However, when it comes to other characters, you begin to question why things went so far, and now that Maria got her comeuppance, will she have to pay for this cathartic release she was given? Of which the answer is… well, a major spoiler so it is on page 2.

Was The Nudity Towards The End Necessary?

While nudity can be artistic, maybe even accentuate a point, it can also be just for the sake of tantalization. Take Eisley going fully nude, pubic hair and all. I get what was trying to be said about Dan finding her beautiful despite what he has said and done in the past. However, it needed to the extent seen?

For while, surely, Eisley agreed to it, and I hope they only had the necessary people needed to film the scene; her being completely naked doesn’t make the scene have more oomph. If anything, it just seems like something to cause a stir maybe and become a big hit on celebrity porn websites. Perhaps with the hope some of those people, when done doing what they did, may take an interest in the project the video or still is from.

Overall

Mixed (Divisive) | Purchase Or Rent On (Amazon)

Look Away gives you very little reason to do so. However, it also reveals itself as the kind of film that eventually cares more about violence and sexual content than story. For while it hits all the points needed to understand Maria, Airam, and Maria’s family, after a while, it stops digging into Maria and Airam’s trauma in a meaningful way. Instead, it just focuses on quick resolutions in the form of violence.

Hence the mixed label. While very much a psychological thriller, it fails both terms as time goes on. It relieves itself from delving into Maria’s psyche and eventually just focuses on her revenge. Then, in terms of the thriller element, there comes a point the thrill boils down to who will or won’t die, and will Maria be one of them?

Airam’s Takeover, At First - 85%
It’s Like Amy Was Just Forgotten About - 65%
When Airam Began To Take Things Too Far - 75%
Was The Nudity Towards The End Necessary? - 74%

75%

While very much a psychological thriller, it fails both terms as time goes on. It relieves itself from delving into Maria’s psyche, and eventually just focuses on her revenge. Then, in terms of the thriller element, there comes a point the thrill boils down to who will or won’t die and will Maria be one of them?

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