Starring: Mia Wasikowska, Nicole Kidman, Matthew Goode, Alden Ehrenreich, Lucas Till, Jacki Weaver, Dermot Mulroney
Directed by: Chan-wook Park
Synopsis: After India’s father dies, her Uncle Charlie, who she never knew existed, comes to live with her and her unstable mother. She comes to suspect this mysterious, charming man has ulterior motives and becomes increasingly infatuated with him.
This is a strange film, one that has taken me a while to watch. I think the name of the film kind of put me off, I just assumed that it was another vampire tale because of the name Stoker. It is actually a pretty good chiller/thriller by the director of Old Boy. I found it to have a bit of an Alice in Wonderland feel to it, certainly at the beginning. It is very stylised but always engaging. I thought the cast were all top notch, especially Mia Wasakowska who has been good in everything I’ve seen her in (Lawless and, ironically enough, Alice In Wonderland). Matthew Goode is also, well, good, as the creepy Uncle Charlie who appears to be not quite what he seems.
I read some good reviews for Stoker before watching it, and I read that there was a ‘twist’ at the end. I felt a little let down because, unless I’m stupid (which is probable), I didn’t really see any great twist. Nothing exciting or new anyway. For one scary minute I thought the film was going to go down the Fight Club/Shutter Island/Black Swan route of using Uncle Charlie as India’s ‘alter ego’. Luckily that didn’t happen.
Overall, this film had me entertained through out, with it’s mix of American Gothic overtones, fantastic performances from its actors, and quirky direction from Park. In fact, it’s just quirky enough to be different, but not so much that it would put anyone off watching it.