Promising Young Woman

Promising Young Woman

This was a sloppy movie trying to make a big point. It’s’ about a girl who pretends to be drunk and then kills people. Or at least that is what the trailer tells you it is about, and that’s what the first 20 minutes of the movie promises, but it’s not what the movie is about it. It’s about the main chick getting killed, while being a stripper, while attempting to kill a rapist. 

I did not like this movie. I like Carey Mulligan, I like Bo Burnham. I like movies that make sense. This movie does not make sense. There are costuming choices that don’t make sense– I mean they live in Ohio for god’s sake, and yet mulligan wears sundresses everywhere, and mulligan just goes to a club. All of her Mulligan’s characters’ friends work in the same area that they went to medical school at? That’s a little wild. These are the more nitpicky parts of my complaints. 

Margo Robbie produced this, and a lot of the problems I had with this movie are consistent along the lines of other movies that Margo produced. The music is on the nose. The first time someone says the rapist’s name in the movie the soundtrack swells with strings. It’s like if you played the Jaws theme song and it makes the movie hard to take seriously. I don’t need to be told how to feel. There is a scene when the Carey Mulligan finds a video of the actual rape of her friend, and the camera stays on her face while she watches it, and it’s just a little bit too much. Mulligan’s face shakes with sadness and anger. 

Bo Burnham is good in this movie–though from the moment he is on screen, I felt confident knowing that his character would be just as shitty as all the other men in the movie. And it turns out he was. But he does have his moments of being funny. There is a great scene where he gets dinner, and that’s full of well timed laughs. But there is another, very boring to me scene, in a pharmacy that’s telling us oh, Carey Mulligan character and Bo Burnahm character are in love. And I’m like yes, we got it. Why is this taking longer than a minute to get across? 

And so I get to one of my bigger complaints, which is about the way that Mulligan’s character dies. First, she dresses up like a stripper and goes to a therapist bachelor party. She drugs all the friends’ liquor and they fall asleep, because at a medical professional slash rapist’s bachelor party there is not a single sober person. Sure. Okay. Then she takes the rapist upstairs and she handcuffs him to bed. Kinky. And here is where movie just gets distracting derivative. She attempts to tattoo stuff to his belly. The movie does this as if we haven’t seen The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I mean she is no LIsbeth Salander. This isn’t even the bad party really. Rapist undoes one of his cuffs (unexplained) and then fights the mulligan character, and then takes a pillow and kills her by having his knee on her neck for an extended amount of time. You know, how Eric Garner died. This movie kills this white chick in one of the most publicised cop killing black men death there is. And it understands this to some degree, because the reason in the movie that it’s doing this, is to tell you that the rapist is doing this intentionally because the big question with Eric Garner is how do you keep your knee on someone for over seven minutes and not intent to kill them. I just find this idea incredibly inappropriate to be used in a movie that is not about racial justice. No one else seems to have any problem with it though, according to what I’ve seen on the Internet. 

Everyone just seems to like this movie because it’s saying that rape is bad. But the girl can’t even get actual justice for herself in the movie. The end of the movie has the girl doing some kind of scheme to get the rapist arrested. This is ridiculous inside of the movie, because when Mulligan’s friend was raped, the police didn’t do anything. The authorities (campus) didn’t do anything. And now we’re just supposed to believe in the movie that the cops will do their job. I don’t. This movie sucked: it was a knock off of Gone Girl without the tight plotting and editing that Gililan Flynn gave the book, and is mostly nonsense. 

Also the black guy she got caught with at the club after telling Bo Burnham she didn’t want to go out on a date that night–he looked just like Patrice O’neal. That’s kind of a low blow. The other actors just get to play themselves, and beloved black comedian is just some dude in a hat.

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