Netflix. The streaming service quickly taking over the entertainment industry thanks to their original shows and movies. And today we are taking a look at one of their original movies.
Ladies and gentlemen… “Gerald’s Game”.
A married couple (Carla Gugino, Bruce Greenwood) feel like their love life has gotten a bit stale. So to spice things up they travel to a lake house to have some fun. However, their kinky games soon lead to Jessie (Gugino) having to survive, cuffed to the bed, after Gerald (Greenwood) dies of a heart attack. So now we have our dark character study. And you might think “Dude, don’t spoil it! Can’t talk about who dies!”. But Gerald’s death is what basically kicks the plot into gear. And I think this a damn good plot. As I not so subtly eluded to, this is a dark character study that delves deep into Jessie’s psyche and her troubled past, as this horrifying situation she’s found herself in forces her to confront her demons. And it’s a truly tense and engaging plot that I was invested in throughout. My only flaw with it is the ending. Had they cut the last ten-ish minutes out I would’ve thought that this movie was close to damn near perfect. And while it doesn’t ruin the overall experience, it did annoy me a bit. So yeah, ending aside, this is a great plot.
The characters here (the few worth talking about) are deep, damaged, flawed, and quite interesting. Carla Gugino plays Jessie, the main character who we see cuffed to the bed throughout the movie. As we learn throughout the movie, she has some dark secrets that she has hidden away for most of her life. And seeing her having to tackle these demons while also trying to find a way out of the bedroom is quite interesting, as I found myself really caring about her. And Gugino is fantastic in the role, best performance I’ve seen from her. Bruce Greenwood (AKA Batman) play Gerald, the eponymous game-starter. He just wanted a nice, kinky weekend with his wife, but he instead gets a heart attack and some stuff dug up about him. We learn some stuff about him that makes him a bit more interesting. And Greenwood is damn great in the role. The last one I want to talk about is Henry Thomas (that’s right, Elliott from “E.T.”) who plays Jessie’s dad in some flashbacks we see. And he’s a bit creepy here, and I’ll leave it at that. And Thomas is great in the role. Really, every actor here does a great job.
The score for the movie was composed by the Newton brothers and it’s pretty damn good. It’s emotional, tense, eerie, and often helped elevate a lot of scenes that they were used in. It really helped make things tense and even kind of scary at times. And I thought it worked beautifully within the movie. And on a quick sidenote: You can get a free download of the album from their website, and I think that’s really cool.
Based on a Stephen King novel, “Gerald’s Game” was directed by Mike Flanagan and I think he did a fantastic job with it. This is a contained thriller, based mostly in the bedroom of this lake house, and Flanagan takes advantage of this isolated setting. His directing is tight and incredibly tense, making me feel constantly on edge throughout the movie. I will also warn you: There is some disturbing as hell imagery in this movie (including gore). So if you’re in the least bit squeamish, then this might not be for you. But some of the imagery in this isn’t just disturbing for the sake of being disturbing, because I feel like it all has some sort of purpose to it.
This movie has been pretty well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 90% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 77/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,7/10.
While having a less than great ending, “Gerald’s Game” is still a great fucking movie. It has a great plot, great characters, fantastic performances, great music, and fantastic directing. As previously stated, the ending isn’t the greatest, but I won’t punish the movie that much over it. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Gerald’s Game ” is a 9,57/10. So while slightly flawed, it still gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
My review of “Gerald’s Game” is now completed.
Batman & Silk Spectre’s Sexy Vacation.