Dir. Jonathan Glazer
In the review that I am linking to below, I hesitated whether I would come to love Under The Skin in its unsettling beauty long afterwards. Its nearly a year now, and the film has stayed as one of the most important films I saw in 2014 because it's refused to leave my mind. Revisting it, it still retains its power, though I wish that as many people saw the film on a cinema screen for its full effect. Also of significance since I last saw this is my growing admiration for Scarlett Johansson. As an actress, not the person where there is the Soda Stream controversy to pick over, (look it up if you're curious), she starred in three very unconventional sci-fi films in 2014 in British cinemas - Under The Skin, Lucy (2014) and Her (2013) - and in all of them she showed a talent that's won me over. Not just taking into account she has three very "different" films in her filmography, all three films stand out as being among the most interesting of the year, which places her up on a higher pedestal for me for the willing to take a risk with all three films. Out of the three, Under The Skin is the one stands out potentially as my favourite film for last year. I intend one day to cover a Best of 2014 post, though with some greater consideration, which is why I did not post one by the start of this January, and this will be a film virtually impossible to knock off number one unless I find another that had such a sensual effect on me.
Abstract Rating (High/Medium/Low/None): Medium
Between Mica Levi's incredible score, her first for any film mind you, to the juxtaposition of semi-documentary with the most abstract of science fiction, a lot in Under The Skin feels utterly alien, if you mind the pun. The juxtaposition of this story with a realism of being set in Scotland is the deciding factor of the film's effect on me, such ordinary things, even Tescos, turned into things you look at with a new perspective. The result feels like stepping through the world as an extraterrestrial like Johansson.
For the full review, written when I first viewed the film, and whose content still apply perfectly, follow the link to my old blog here.