cacb3995's Movie Review of Martha Marcy May Marlene

Rating of

Martha Marcy May Marlene

Between two ideals of reality
cacb3995 - wrote on 03/13/18

Elizabeth Olsen stars in this Sean Durkin directed psychological drama about a woman named Martha who suffers from an identity crisis when she returns to her sister Lucy’s (Sarah Paulson) life after being away for two years. During that time she was part of a sort of cult, free-love hippie community led by the mysterious and radical Patrick (John Hawkes). The film was released in 2011 and received critical acclaim, especially towards Olsen’s performance. The indie produced flick is one that I’d been interested for some time, and now that I have finally gotten around to seeing it I’m reading to share my thoughts with you.

As I said, a lot of praise was given at the time of the film’s release to Olsen’s performance, and rightfully so. Before this she had starred in small roles (in some of her elder sisters’, the Olsen twins, movies), but her breakthrough into fame came her. She is very emotional in this film, her paranoia and inner conflict is very well captured by the actress’s facial expressions, her tortured psyche shines through her outer shell. Also great is John Hawkes as the cult’s leader, a figure with very radical beliefs and questionable morality. I found it unfortunate that the film didn’t explore this character further, since he was one of the most interesting aspects of the movie, but I get that it is all about Martha’s story and giving too much focus to the Patrick character would’ve taken away some of the attention to Martha’s dilemma and trauma.

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