August 7, 2012
Movie Review: Scalene (2011)
Starring Margo Martindale, Hanna Hall and Adam Scarimbolo
Fan’s of psychological thrillers, buckle your seat-belts because Zack Parker’s Scalene is about to take you on a wild ride.
In a nutshell this is a perceptual thriller which is told from three points of view revolving around the rape of a female caretaker by a brain-damaged and mentally handicapped man and his mother’s subsequent revenge after his incarceration.
The story is told in a very non-linear fashion, with the climax of the film being shown at the beginning and then the events leading up to that moment played out in a sort of helter-skelter kind of way that felt like puzzle pieces which slowly begin to fit together in such a way that you don't know what the whole picture will look like until the final piece is set in place. And when that final piece is set down, the picture looks nothing like what you imagined it would.
The way in which the audience perceives each of the three characters is going to swing like a pendulum several times during this film. Who is the true victim? And who is the true victimizer? Even after the film is over you will be mulling over that question for a long time. This is the kind of high-emotional impact movie that Hollywood doesn't bother making any more. Thank goodness for independent film companies like Breaking Glass Pictures, who are putting out engaging and entertaining movies with a consistency that major motion picture companies just cant keep up with.
The performance of Margo Martindale as the mother, Janice Trimble, was masterful. She was born to play the role of the guilt ridden mother who is straining under the pressure of a life completely consumed by the care of her adult invalid son. The performances of Hanna Hall as the caregiver, Paige, and Adam Scarimbolo as Jakob were both realistic and convincing but they were barely able to keep up with Martindale, as she basically takes over the entire picture and makes it her own.
This is the kind of movie where I don't want to reveal a single part of the plot, the kind of movie that deserves to be viewed sight-unseen by everyone, so that they can enjoy the afterglow of contemplation once the film is over. It is an amazing study in human psychology and ethics, with the crux of the film revolving around Paige’s fear of confrontation, people doing the wrong things for the right reasons and ultimately asking the question....Do the ends justify the means?
If you like intelligent cinema and a skillfully told story with a mind-blowing reveal, it doesn't get much better then Zack Parker’s Scalene.
Highly Recommended, go out and get your hands on this movie. You wont be disappointed.
9 out of 10 Reviewed by KennyB