Time Out says
From the opening sequence – Trevor wrapping a corpse in his carpet and taking it to the sea – it’s clear we’re in for some heavy-duty expressionism. A lick of Lynch, a pinch of Polanski, a modicum of ‘Memento’, heaps of Herrmannesque menace on the music track – all this and Anna Massey, mirrors, dismemberment, machinery, dead mothers, doubles, Dostoevsky, post-it notes, power cuts, ghost trains, sewers, bleach…
Director Brad Anderson and writer Scott Kosar toss everything including the kitchen sink into the pot, as their emaciated somnambulist protagonist tries to fathom how he got to such a bleary, bruised and scarred state of being (or not-being?). The resulting stew, frankly, is a bit messy; though it almost makes some kind of psychological sense, it never really persuades as an authentic portrait of a tormented mind.
That said, it’s very watchable; above all, one can’t deny the dubious appeal of the spectacle of the skin-and-bone Bale, quite possibly endangering his health for the sake of his art. Against the odds, the crazed intensity of his performance makes the movie work.
Cast and crew
Jennifer Jason Leigh