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Enjoy the absurdity of our world. It’s a lot less painful. Believe me, our world is a lot less painful than the real world.

 The erotically charged red sofa lying against the barren deserts of West Texas, a lost champagne glass clicking against every other in uppity rich parties, a motor car cruising along the roads to nowhere, the kind of sad blue eyes that seduces and a nasty betrayal that brings the best in its victim. Tom Ford has created a wizardry of aesthetics and allowed the narrative to fit in ever so seamlessly, like a river to an ocean.

Susan Morrow is practically walking over the broken pointed pieces of her relationships. She reminisces about her past as the new found love turned out to be just another smooth talking charmer from the posh remains of her generation. In the midst of it all, she receives a transcript from her ex-husband containing a fictional novel from which she can somehow draw parallels to the reality, as things start to spiral out of control. Lies, deceits, lust and capitalism, all shaken in a pitiful flask of artificiality, consumes her entire world.

Balancing multiple timelines while skillfully playing with varied color tones, Tom Ford presents a package worthy of an art show. He plays around with frames, assembles scenes as a perfectionist and injects tones with an elan of a  mad practitioner at work. Though it may prove off-putting to some, but the excessive detailing works wonders as he had left drops of symbolism in numerous scenes for viewers to catch hold of the complete charade way before the narratives merge. He is aided tremendously by an outstanding spot on casting. Amy Adams is a walking painting, Michael Shannon is devilishly breathtaking, Jake Gyllenhaal is a notch above his usual best and Aaron Taylor-Johnson is magnetically wicked. 

Nocturnal Animals is a fever dream of complex human emotions ranging from passionate desires to deeply rooted regrets. It’s a drug that prolongs the pain, a mirror which reflects nothing back when stared at, a battle where there can never be a victor. It is a dash of hypnotic colors and haunting ambiance, fused with ever-present chaos, smiling slyly at all that is black within our easily corruptible souls.

★★

 

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