In the words of Cartman from South Park – “That Movie has warped my fragile little mind”
Every now and then, technological advances in cinema move things along. From 3D to IMAX, from 35mm to digital…..then we get someone using an iPhone to record an entire movie!
Unsane takes an everyday camera that millions of people have access to and makes a gripping thriller using only that to record with.
Claire Foy plays Sawyer Valentini who is convinced she is being stalked. She approaches a clinic to help and inadvertently checks herself in for a 24hr observation on the psych ward. Naturally she ends up staying longer than 24 hours, whilst constantly seeing her stalker within the facility.
The use of iPhone, and the angles in which the whole film is shot at really draw out a sense of unease in the whole situation. Shots are not framed in a traditional sense. You feel constantly on edge, drawing you into Sawyer’s world as it falls down around her.
The film starts off as intriguing and slowly devolves into disturbing. Foy is brilliant in the lead role, attempting to cope with the constant threat of being incarcerated forever as a patient strapped to a bed. Joshua Leonard, as the potential stalker she keeps seeing is truly terrifying and disturbed, and coupled with long scenes of dialogue, suspense and the irritatingly good use of the camera, you are never quite sure whether Sawyer is going to be proven correct or whether it’s all in her head.
Brilliantly shot, psychologically disturbing whilst not necessarily being scary in a “jump out of your seat” sense, but it doesn’t need to be. The suspense and edginess carry it from being good to being very good!
Here’s my “straight out of the cinema” review in the Cineworld Leeds Car Park, followed by the trailer: