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Review - A Cure for Wellness

By midlandsmovies, Jun 27 2017 01:24PM

A Cure For Wellness (2017) Dir. Gore Verbinski


A cure for preposterousness should be the title of this new thriller from Gore Verbinski who takes his great visual eye honed on the glorious high seas of the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy and wraps them around a ridiculous tale of terror in an eerie institution.


The film looks gorgeous and has Leonardo Di Caprio lookalike Dane DeHaan playing a Di Caprio-esque character in a film that has more than a resemblance to Di Caprio’s turn in Shutter Island. Like that film we have a protagonist sent to a remote medical facility where there may or may not be sinister forces at work.


The high-flying corporate De Haan is asked to retrieve a work colleague (now a patient) from the home in the hills of the Swiss Alps but after a freak accident becomes hospitalised himself. Confined with a broken leg he scours the creepy institution finding a host of mysteries and uncovered histories during his investigations.


Being one of the best looking films of the year is not enough however and with a hugely extended runtime over 2 hours and 20 minutes, the general themes of the film have been done elsewhere dozens of times before. The story runs out of steam two-thirds in yet contains a multitude of anti-climaxes as we are supposed to question whether he is there against his will or not.


A Beauty and the Beast allegory towards the end muddles the central theme of creating and maintaining life itself and the interesting (and realistic) premise develops into a strange fairy tale finale with monstrous outcomes that simply felt too silly.


Jason Isaacs channels a Dracula and Dorian Grey vibe and although great as an antagonistic doctor whose intentions could be darker than they first seem, his character (like the rest of the movie) overstays its welcome too.


The story is solid, De Haan is a superb actor and carries much of the film on his own but although it had me very intrigued during parts, this ‘tale as old as time’ needed to be at least 40 minutes shorter. This would help maintain a quicker pace and to get to a conclusion that would be inevitably guessed by any audience paying attention.


A nice diversion with some outstanding visuals, A Cure For Wellness is sadly a great 100-minute movie kept against its will inside a longer film that contains far too much redundant waffle.


7/10


Midlands Movies Mike

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