Film FestivalsMovie ReviewsTIFF 2018: Greta Review

Keith NoakesSeptember 7, 2018

This will be one of many reviews during this year’s Toronto International Film Festival. If you would like to keep up with our content, click here.

Synopsis: A young woman befriends a lonely widow. (IMDB)

Starring: Isabelle Huppert, Chloë Grace Moretz, and Maika Monroe

Writers: Ray Wright and Neil Jordan

Director: Neil Jordan

Rating: n/a

Running Time: 98mins

Trailer: n/a

Stalker films have mostly been dominated by men but what happens when the gender is reversed? This was the case here with Greta. When it comes to the story, there is a lot of ambiguity here which will surely lead to several different interpretations. Cue Frances (Moretz), the mild-mannered, good girl who found herself in the wrong place at the wrong time (this wouldn’t be much of a story otherwise). The simple act of returning a lost purse to an older French woman named Greta (Huppert) led to a relationship that quickly became something more. After losing her mother the year prior, Greta became sort of a mother figure for Frances.

Frances’ fantasy of course didn’t last once Greta’s more sinister intentions surfaced. Whether they came from a place of love or a place of malice was unclear but ridding herself of Greta proved to be easier said than done for Frances as she became the target of Greta’s obsession. This obsession would take them to some pretty dark places and the cat and mouse game between them was thrilling to watch. Perhaps taking inspiration from older thrillers, the film would use a retro thriller score that fit with the action on screen.

What will divide viewers is the film’s campy nature. The film has moments of arguably cheese dialog all while making some big leaps with its characters, especially Greta. However, the film never fell of the rails. The best part of the film, without a doubt, was Huppert’s incredible performance as Greta. She was a tour de force of crazy while bringing some humanity to the role. Moretz as Frances was a worthy adversary and Monroe was fun as Frances’ best friend Erica, however, this was Huppert’s show as she steals just about every scene she’s in.

Overall, this was a fun psychological thriller whose campiness will surely divide people as enjoyment will be dictated by whether you think its intentional or not. Regardless, Huppert’s incredible performances makes this well worth the watch.

Score: 7.5/10

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