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Between Louis’s persistence and madness, Jake Gyllenhaal has undoubtedly found himself a film which likely will be linked to his career as much a Donnie Darko and Brokeback Mountain.
Review (with Spoilers)
Not since Brothers, in 2009, have I seen anything remotely interesting come with Jake Gyllenhaal’s name attached. Prince of Persia, quite frankly, should have had someone of western Asian descent, and Prisoners seemed boring as hell. With Nightcrawler, though, there was this intrigue in the trailer and in the film Gyllenhaal gets you engaged to the point of leaning forward, laughing, being in shock sometimes and wondering how will the film end? Well, I won’t necessarily tell you how it ends but for more information you can look below.
Characters & Story
Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal) is a very odd young man. His past is unknown to us, but what we do know is he picks up quick, is highly ambitious, knows how to do research on the internet like a pro, and comes to every face to face interaction with a precise plan. Thus making him a very odd person to find interested in filming crime scenes. However, between him and his partner Rick (Riz Ahmed), as well as Louis’ business deal with Nina (Rene Russo), you see what can happen when a man with ambition, a good eye, and a weak moral compass, can do if you just give him the opportunity.
Setting aside I have yet to see Gone Girl, nor Selma, I think Jake Gyllenhaal likely is going to be every actor’s main competition for major accolades at this point. For there is something about how calculating and mad Louis is portrayed that keeps you on edge. And with most films which have performances like these, sadly it is more so something you can only see as a work of art, something worth viewing once and possibly never again. However, with Nightcrawler, there is replay value. For one, the dialog, as much as it seems inspired by the online business class Louis took, somehow Gyllenhaal figures a way to make the delivery funny at times, and yet also something that makes you think. Thus deepening Louis as a character for while there is this desire to start throwing around different psychiatric labels, by the end of the film the only label you can really come up with is brilliant.
Focusing a bit more on the story, what I loved the most was the pacing. For while Louis starts off sort of with nothing, it isn’t like we for a long period are forced to see him struggle. No, instead we watch as the foundation is set, and then we quickly see the film build Louis up to the point time flies as you watch what goes on. Leading to the final crime he records in which you are wondering what may happen to the point it is hard for your imagination to not race a little bit.
While not a big issue for me, surprisingly, I must admit I can see some people wanting to know more about Louis’ backstory. Especially since he seems off and while some of his mystique is appealing, at the same time it makes you wonder what his life was like before we meet him. On top of that, while I liked Russo, I feel like she, among most of the supporting cast, don’t have characters which stand on their own. For while they are a bit more detailed than the supporting roles in Birdman, I can’t say their characters were sacrificed in order to support Louis. If anything, Louis used and manipulated their characters to the point you have to feel sorry for them.
Overall: Worth Seeing – Recommended
Just for the dialog I missed, and quote worthy sentences, I have to see this movie again. But also I feel this is the type of film you want to see your friends’ reaction to. For between what Louis does, and everyone’s reaction, I can see a lot of people having discussions about what they would put up with and what they think happened to Louis before we meet him. Though what really pushes this film into being Worth Seeing, never mind being labeled as Recommended, is that as much as there is a quality performance worthy of an Oscar here, it doesn’t seem made solely for that crowd. It also makes you laugh, think, and just thoroughly entertains you unlike around half of the films which get major award nominations.
“The true price of any item is what you’ll sell for it.”
— Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal) – Nightcrawler