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Resurrection (2022) – Review – Rebecca Hall is the Best

July 31, 2022

Quick Thoughts – Grade B – Resurrection is an absorbing thriller that takes you to places you’d never expect (which is a good thing). Once again, Rebecca Hall proves that she’s absolutely fearless and isn’t afraid to tackle unique material that requires her to go through a wild amount of trauma and psychological horror. 

Writing about Resurrection is tough because there’s so much that should be left unspoiled. I went into my screening with zero prior knowledge and only knew that Hall and Tim Roth were the stars. I’m glad I never watched a trailer for it because I really enjoyed the roller coaster of events and emotions that the movie creates. What I can say is that Hall plays a woman named Margaret, who starts to unravel when her abusive ex-boyfriend David (Tim Roth – with the creepiest toothy grin I’ve ever seen) begins stalking her after twenty-two years of separation. Before David messes up her world, we learn that Hall is a workaholic single mom who happily doles out advice to younger coworkers, and spends her free time running through a city that is loaded with brutalist architecture (the movie was filmed in New York City). Her daughter Abbie (Grace Kaufman) is a nice kid who is used to Margaret’s long hours and gives the snarkiest teenager responses to pretty much everything Margaret does. All in all, it’s not a bad life that Margaret has made for herself after the traumatizing relationship she had with David, a man who is 20+ years older than her and had no problem controlling her for many years. Since it’s a thriller, things begin to spiral when Margaret sees David at a business lecture and she’s forced to deal with some truly terrible memories and feelings.

The highlight of the film is a darkly funny monologue in which Margaret tells the story (in one long eight-minute take) of what happened between her and David to a co-worker named Gwyn (Angela Wong Carbone) who frequently asks her for advice. The story leaves Gwyn completely shocked and you can tell that she can’t handle what was just told to her because it was very irresponsible of Margaret to drop the insane tale of abuse on an intern. After a brief silence, the visibly shaking Gwyn responds with “Is this a joke?,” and she leaves the office mumbling to herself as she tries to process the heaviness of what Margaret just told her. Telling a young intern such a horrible story isn’t cool, but it makes you respect Margaret more because most people would be in a pit of depression if they experienced what she did. That’s why she controls her interactions with men, and has created a stable world in which she can survive. 

The script by Andrew Semans (who also directed the movie) was on the 2019 Black List and it just makes total sense that it would be a popular script that nobody wanted to produce. Thinking about the movie makes me smile, and when I tried to explain it to my wife we both were left a bit confused. I don’t think that it totally earns the ending, but I’d happily watch the movie again to enjoy Hall’s committed performance. After being wasted in movies like Iron Man 3, I love that she’s directing popular movies like Passing and starring in critically adored horror films like The Night House. If you’re looking to watch an ambitious thriller that really goes for it, I totally recommend you watch Resurrection

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