Movie Review: Alice, Darling (2022)
Synopsis: Alice is in love with her artist boyfriend, Simon. However, Simon's emotional abuse is beginning to take a toll on her, creating an eating disorder and causing her to rip her hair out. She lies to him so she can take a girls' trip with her friends, Sophie and Tess, to a cabin and the stress from the abuse nearly damages the friendship until her friends learn why. As they help her realize the abuse and become her former self, their work is potentially derailed by Simon arriving unannounced.
Review: There wasn't much on television when we sat down with dinner, so I found a movie to watch with my wife. This one looked interesting, so we picked it. It turned out to be an OK choice though not what we were expecting.
I'll start out by saying Kendrick's performance was fantastic. It's one thing to portray physical abuse. Emotional abuse is a lot more complicated (at least in my opinion) and she pulled it off perfectly. I loved how she would seem perfectly normal one minute, distant another and then suddenly have a full-blown panic attack over something seemingly minor, like a lost earring. Even though the film showed some of the abuse, it really made me wonder just how much other abuse she had endured.
I also thought her friends' (Horn and Mosaku) reaction to her emotional breakdown was realistic, with them spending part of the movie angry with her because they misinterpreted it as her being selfish. Their efforts to help her regain her sense of self-identity and self-worth was empowering.
I did think the movie was wrongly classified as a thriller. It was an OK drama but, despite his abuse, there wasn't anything even remotely menacing enough about Simon to make it seem like he was going to take things to the next level. Even after he showed up at their cabin, I fully expected some sort of "Goodbye Earl" moment for him rather than him causing any real damage.
I'm also still a little confused about the point being made with Alice's obsession over the missing girl they were searching for. Did she identify with the girl? Or was there another reason for that?
Final Opinion: Kendrick's performance makes this movie worth watching. However, if you're expecting a thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat, this isn't going to do that.
My Grade: B