I suppose it was an inevitability, but if I was just five minutes more late to this movie, I still would have been able to avoid the second “Logan” trailer. In all honesty, the second trailer did absolutely nothing for me, and I still wish that I avoided it.
A Cure for Wellness was a film that I’ve been wanting to see since I saw the previews. The visually stunning trailer left much to the imagination, and I was hoping that it would be a solid film. Like Logan, by the way, the second trailer for this movie did absolutely nothing for me either.
And while I can safely say that it’s not as bad as everyone else is saying it is, it’s not as good as I was hoping it would be.
First off, the best thing about the movie is the cinematography. If I was grading this movie based on camerawork, tone, and lighting alone, I would probably give it something like an 8 or 9 out of 10.
But if I were to grade something based on one great element on it’s own, then I would have given John Wick 2 an amazing grade like everyone else did.
The shots not only made the film a lot more interesting, but memorable as well. As the film goes on, it loses that captivating ability somewhat, but the shots were all well done throughout. There are shots in the film that felt overly artsy and/or unnecessary (and surprise surprise, most of them had to do with dream sequences), but it’s kept to a minimum.
The soundtrack, while rather generic, emphasized the tone of the camerawork effectively.
The acting in this movie is fine; there’s not any weak performance, but there’s also nothing to remember about any of these characters or performances.
Now for all of its great camerawork and its decent performances, there are some things about the movie that greatly annoyed me.
The first thing is the character logic. Lockhart (Dane DeHaan), the main character, frequently had moments where I was questioning his decision making, as he makes some of the stupidest and least thought-out decisions in the world. Of course the reason for this, as is most stupid decisions in movies, is to further the plot and keep the movie going, but it always feels cheap when this happens.
The second thing is how aimless it often feels. There were plenty of times in the movie where I was wondering what the point was to what I was seeing. For many scenes, the answer was either “to freak you out” or “it looks artsy”.
Now there’s some subtle themes and symbolism to be had if you’re paying close enough attention, but this isn’t for all instances. Oftentimes, there isn’t a point to be had.
Basically, what we have here is a visually stunning movie with competent acting that is oftentimes nonsensical or pointless. The movie could have really benefited from some intelligent writing and direction, but because it didn’t, it fails to reach greatness.
For those who are wondering if there’s any squeamish material: there is a few times where they show some disturbing imagery, there’s quite a bit of nudity here and there, and there is also an attempted rape scene that was uncomfortable to watch.
As The VVitch and Moonlight both demonstrated, you cannot get rid of great storytelling and complex characters and then expect to get by with just beautiful cinematography and better-than-average acting. This movie is just another example of this fact. I enjoyed watching it, and there’s some scenery shots that will stick with me, but otherwise this film is depressingly forgettable.