Nocturnal Animals Narrative Review

*This article may contains spoilers*

Today I will write a review about Nocturnal Animal by Tom Ford what can I say about this film I don’t even know where to start from, I looked into the cast and I knew this is going to be something amazing. But as soon as we got to the opening sequence of old ladies dancing in an art exhibition I was caught off guard that was creepy and yes this is a creepy and dark movie, to begin with.

What makes this movie so unique is the juxtaposition and parallel editing of three stories that have been beautifully put on screen by Tom Ford who directed Single Men and this being his second directed movie which bought his Fashion Design knowledge come into the role as the production design and the art world is vividly seen in this film. Its a film that shows three story world layered together with the use of Susan ( Amy Adams) present world filled with the luxurious successful art gallery manager, A world that Susan imagine while reading her ex-husband Edward, (Jake Gyllenhaal) novel which plays out a trip of the writer himself to Texas with his family which is fictional and dark and the third world Susan past with Edward on how they met and how they parted ways after an unsusccessful relationship which has the cinematography of any regular couple life.


The narrative side of this film is so good as we see these stories link up together it’s like a triple coated chocolate layer cake and as you start digging into it gets better and better. This is not your typical revenge tale as Jake Gyllenhaal uses his weakness as a subtextual taunt to his ex-wife who left him because of this reason but he does that by using his Novel as a tool as it shows a family going through a horrible experience as the “man of the house” is unable to stand up and protect them portraying his weakness. This is where the direction of Tom Ford goes beyond expectation as it leaves the viewer coming up with their own theories at the end of the film as its one of the films that leaves you thinking as its shifts from story worlds so often you arent aware which side of it is fictional which in most cases goes horribly wrong but with Nocturnal Animal its not the case its one of those films that each time you see it you will find something new to unravel. aarontaylor.jpg

What really caught my eye was the fact that Edward uses Tony’s story as a subtext telling how he must have felt after Susan aborts their child and leaves him hence how he shows in the novel that his daughter and wife dies because he didnt do anything there were other instances where he showed his weakness through his writing.

The true conclusion of the film as a revenge tale is revealed to the viewer at the very end as Edward never shows up showing Susan that he has overcome his weakness but also showing that it has killed him from the inside hence the ending of Tony in the novel as he shoots himself accidentally and dies. Which in a subtext mean that even though he came to accept his loss and overcome it he isnt the same anymore.

Overall I believe Nocturnal Animal is an amazing narrative film which is filled with subtext symbolism and with Tom Ford artistic direction makes the viewer deeply indulged and with a highly talented cast makes it an A movie and how he used 3 stories and interlaced them is wondrous and spectacular to see for any film maker. I’ll rate it an 8 out of 10.


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