April 11, 2013

A 21st Century Hitchcock? Not Quite.

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“Just as a flower doesn’t choose its color, so we don’t choose who we are going to be.”  This line, spoken by a teenage girl on the cusp of adulthood, provides the first of many unsettling moments in Stoker, an uneven tale of macabre murders and even more horrifying family secrets.  The speaker of that line, India Stoker (Mia Wasikowska), is the only child of wealthy architect Richard (Dermot Mulroney) and demure housewife Evelyn (Nicole Kidman).  India is like a grown-up Wednesday Addams, all sullen sarcasm and dark hair, and she lives with her parents in a drafty old house not unlike the Addams family manse. On India’s eighteenth birthday her father dies in a horrible car accident. A few days later, at Richard’s funeral, his mysterious younger brother Charlie shows up unexpectedly, much to the suspicion of the town gossips, and begins to ingratiate himself with Evelyn. As people begin to disappear, India is drawn more and more to her enigma of an uncle, while undergoing some dark changes herself.

Original Author: Laura Boland