True to its title, the first half hour of Run darling, run is a catch-up game. We meet Cherie (Ella Balinska), a single mother and aspiring lawyer pushed into a client dinner. The details of his life are an afterthought, squeezed out of our purview by the demands of his powerful boss, James (Clark Gregg). Having to find a babysitter on short notice, Cherie rushes to her adorable toddler’s house, dropping her last tampon in the toilet. Not only will she have to pass the next 100-minute horror movie on her period, but she’ll also have a serious plumbing problem if she survives.
Cherie is focused and caring, an ambitious woman facing the daily minefield of being a black woman in a hostile patriarchy. She knows better than anyone that complaining about lustful people on the bus will get you nowhere. It’s a point the movie makes constantly – “Nobody cares.” And yet, the film is not as pessimistic or as cynical as that. Run darling, run comes from a well-observed point of view that about 50% of the world’s population shares. But its singular purpose is short-sighted, preventing the film from delivering effective scares.
Run darling, runThe configuration of is familiar. Cherie meets the client, Ethan (game of thrones‘ Pilou Asbæk), in his sumptuous residence. He’s supposed to be a natural charmer, even though Asbæk isn’t, pouring Cherie a 90% gin and tonic and taking her to the best sushi restaurant in town. Ethan really does not like dogs, but this is not a decisive factor, and our heroine passes out. Cherie accepts his invitation for a nightcap as long as he wakes her at dawn.
Wherever you think it leads, Run darling, run head straight for the unexpected, but not always successfully. As Ethan drives Cherie home, he breaks the fourth wall and blocks the camera. He knows the target audience for this type of film and what he expects to see. Director Shana Feste has other plans. From outside her door, we hear Cherie pleading and screaming until she runs away.
G/O Media may receive a commission
discount of 20
Ettitude – 20% off
20% off bundled bamboo bedding
The brand’s exclusive CleanBamboo is a soft, breathable fabric; their signature satin is cool to the touch.
His escape kicks off a walking tour of LA reminiscent The Terminator and Collateral, where views are either blurry or hidden as Los Angeles’ homeless encampments highlight the city’s inhumanity. Cherie finds herself outside a movie theater begging two white women for help. Of course they call the police, who arrest Cherie. Lover observe how too often state protection is for powerful white men, and Ethan has bought and paid for them.
The well intentioned Run darling, run weaponizes gendered realities imposed on women. However, as Smilea horror hit equally rich in metaphors, Lover trips over himself to maintain the allegory, turning things like Cherie’s menstruation into a ploy. As she escapes from the police station, Rob Coudert’s heavy synth score is in John Charpentier fashion. It’s an appropriate choice, but Carpenter always knew the message was meaningless without the scares. Cherie’s actions, like throwing a tampon to get Ethan off his trail, don’t give her much power as they push the plot to the next level. Unfortunately, audiences get lost trying to figure out the script from Feste, Keith Josef Adkins, and Kellee Terrell, and that’s a hurdle the film can’t clear.
Despite the shortcomings of the screenplay, Balinska bases the film on emotion. Ignoring the creepy advances in her eye socket that keep her at 10, the actor finds new places to take her fear and strength, whether she’s taking a bleach shower or facing to the unholy terror of Ethan’s proper form. Asbæk’s poor cast fare slightly less well. Known primarily as the Euron Greyjoy Unlimited Monster on game of thrones, the actor does not have the suitable charm to isolate his wolf in sheepfold. A goofy roller skating scene tests the limits of watching him having fun on screen. Asbæk’s unpredictability is his secret weapon, and he’s unarmed here.
And yet, the plot doesn’t matter because it doesn’t need charm. Like all the other C-suite executives in the movie, James can’t believe Ethan would act this way. However, his wife Judy (Betsy Brandt) knows the score. She can spot a so-called “nice guy” from a mile away, and that bond binds women together, along with the film’s message that public transport can be the literal lifeline for many people in a city where only the most powerful are protected.
Run darling, run is the product of someone who has a sense of creating images. With David Fincher’s tidy, dimly lit aesthetic, Feste’s camera gorges itself on whatever it can glean from the streetlights of Sunset Blvd. A beginner in horror after dramas like Borders and strong countryFeste makes a strong commitment to red-and-green motifs and street-level cinematography, but sadly doesn’t convey their menace.
Run darling, run moves at an Olympian’s pace for a tightly sealed thriller, but it leaves less room for audiences to engage than to simply observe. Keep the public at bay – watch and sympathize with Cherie, but never create suspense about her survival –Run darling, run loses its breath long before darlingThe story of comes to its ridiculous conclusion.
#Timely #thriller #Run #Sweetheart #Run #stumbles #metaphors