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Home Blog Features Why You Should See Martha Marcy May Marlene... in 3 Minutes and 57 Seconds
Why You Should See Martha Marcy May Marlene... in 3 Minutes and 57 Seconds Print E-mail
Written by Ivan Radford   
Friday, 03 February 2012 07:16

Martha Marcy May Marlene Review - John Hawkes singing Marcy's song 

Sean Durkin's Martha Marcy May Marlene is out in UK cinemas today. It's really good.

Why? Well, I could go on for days about Zachary Stuart-Pontier's inspired editing (he also cut Catfish) and how it gently blends the boundary between present and past using the tiniest gestures (a dip in a lake, the stirring of a glass of water). Or I could rabbit on for hours about how Durkin and his DoP Jody Lee Lipes spend the whole movie gradually zooming in closer on the fractured and vulnerable Elisabeth Olsen. I could happily shout in your face for hours declaring my undying love for Olsen's mesmerising performance - balanced out by John Hawkes' intimidating presence - or the careful unravelling of Marcy May's chilling attempts to escape the grasp of a cult.

Instead, I'm going to convince you to see Martha Marcy May Marlene in 3 minutes and 57 seconds...



Hawkes' cult leader sings Jackson C. Frank's song to Marcy as she is slowly indoctrinated into the group. It's a breathtaking moment in a terrifying, beautiful film.

“Fear is the best emotion,” he tells her. “It gives you full awareness of everything.” Marthy Marcy May Marlene is packed full of fear. And you’ll notice every detail.

Head this way to read a full Martha Marcy May Marlene review from the London Film Festival - and for the record, after I've lined up to seen it again tomorrow, don't be surprised if I bump the film's rating up to five stars.