Stoker [2013] ★★★

stoker-poster-us-405x600If you’re not interested in what Wentworth Miller (“Prison Break”) and director Chan Wook Park (“Oldboy”) are cooking up, you’re missing out on one of the weirdest movies of the year. “Stoker” is also an ode to Hitchcock’s “Shadow of a Doubt”, in which a young girl bonds with her serial killer uncle (yikes!). The title of the movie may or may not refer to Bram Stoker, the creator of Dracula, but the atmosphere couldn’t be more chilling. Uncle Charlie (played by Matthew Goode) visits India (Mia Wasikowska) after her father’s death and just before her 18th birthday. The man is charming, but she can’t quite figure him out and neither can we. But we know that he’s up to no good (well at least I did). Her mother (Nicole Kidman) is of no help but that’s another story. Chan Wook Park’s visuals are a sumptuous treat, so is Goode’s unmistakable sense of creepiness. Some viewers may complain about the bizarre atmosphere, but once you absorb the tone of the film and acquaint yourself with its weird characters, the movie has many surprises in store. It’s not great, by any measure, but I found it unusual, and in a year of disappointments, that’s always a good thing.

Rating: 3/4

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