Nocturnal Animals ★★★★★

A beautifully-crafted, euphoric nightmare of monumental proportions.

Tom Ford's Nocturnal Animals is earth-shatteringly brilliant, bold, seductive, lurid, twisted, grimy, grim, and truly unforgettable.

He creates such a complex, seamlessly intertwined, constantly evolving narrative that so cleverly blurs the line between fiction and reality to create an unpredictable, thought-provoking, and endlessly engaging story that thrills and shocks at every possible turn through his brilliant direction, extraordinary performances, and dazzling cinematography.

A genuinely captivating masterwork of purely invigorating and exhilarating dramatic tension and emotional storytelling.

Amy Adams embodies perfection here, even surpassing her astounding work in Arrival to create a character whose struggles and decisions feel crushingly heartless but realistically human. Her work serves as a stunningly powerful and strikingly intimate testament to her true acting talent.

Jake Gyllenhaal delivers what might be my favorite performance of his. Playing dual roles, he so firmly manages to distinguish both characters in such richly complex and harshly conflicting emotion which makes him so utterly magnetic to lay one's gaze upon.

He loses himself. He transforms into an unstoppable force capable of conjuring up the strongest of feelings and the most shocking of reactions.

As per usual, Michael Shannon crushes it. His naturally calm but earnestly stern demeanor flows beautifully in relation to the unforgivably cruel world he inhabits.

But, by far, the performance that took my breath away and never gave it back was Aaron Taylor-Johnson.

OH MY GOD.

What a sinister, vile, unnerving, and horrifyingly menacing presence he brought.

Trust me; this is NOT the blandly generic pretty boy from Godzilla.

His performance is fucking unreal.

Never have I walked out of a theater in such a state of confused shock, awe, whimsy, and sheer confusion over what I had just witnessed.

Never has a film challenged me on such an intense level as this movie has now.

Never has a piece of cinema made me so endlessly question the role of art when concerning identity, purpose, love, and revenge as this film has.

Tom Ford cast an intoxicating spell on me.

He opened my eyes to show just how limitless the possibilities are when creating a film and the range of emotions you can evoke in such a short amount of time.

Pure euphoria.

Without a doubt, the best film of 2016.

I know I said that about Arrival almost three weeks ago but this takes it to a whole new level.

You have absolutely no idea how hauntingly entrancing this movie truly is until you experience it on the big screen.

Ford mercilessly shoves you in these character's shoes. You live through them. Their story rewrites yours. By the end, you get hit square in the face with the crushing devastation and boiling rage that they all feel.

Amy Adams, Jake Gyllenhaal, Michael Shannon, Aaron-Taylor Johnson, and Tom Ford are the saviors of cinema.

Easily the best movie to hit theaters since Boyhood and absolutely one of my favorite movies now.

It might be even better than A Single Man.

I think I'm in love.

5/5

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