All I See is You and Lots of Plodding, Explicit Content
- Susan Ellingburg Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
- 2017 26 Oct
If you're hoping for an action-packed, fast-paced thriller, keep looking; All I See is You takes its own sweet time. This artsy, brooding film looks at the dynamics of a relationship and what happens when the balance of power shifts. Includes beautiful cinematography and quality acting... but graphic sex. 2.5 out of 5.
Gina (Blake Lively) and James (Jason Clarke) are a happily married couple living in Thailand. Not even her blindness can mar their contentment. But when an operation restores Gina's sight, she sees more than she expected. As Gina's confidence grows, her husband's evaporates. She blossoms; he fades. How far will he go to get back the relationship he cherished?
Lively gives a star performance as she takes us on Gina's journey from her sheltered life as a happily-married blind woman to a wife who sees more than she bargained for. The strain Gina's new-found independence puts on her marriage is fascinating and believable. Clarke's turn as Gina's husband has nuances that will keep you guessing; is he a good guy or…? It's a good thing they're both so watchable; otherwise the snail's pace of the first hour would put the audience to sleep (walkouts have been reported at multiple screenings).
Director Marc Forster provides several moments of unfocused light and kaleidoscope images to give us a taste of what Gina sees. It may be a tad overdone, but overall it's an effective technique.
You know those "jump scares" so popular in horror films? This movie has the exact opposite – a slow-moving sense of something ominous that grows stronger with every passing minute. It’s disturbing in a creepy-good way.
The film takes a deliberate (read: slow) pace until the last few minutes, when we're rushed through an ending that leaves several questions unanswered. With a movie that clocks in under two hours one would think Forster could have spared another five minutes to provide closure.
There are several scenes I felt were completely unnecessary, including one in a red light district of Barcelona. Do these moments move the story forward? Not so much. They seem to be excuses to show gratuitous sex, and gratuitous kinky sex at that.
Christian Worldview Elements / Spiritual Themes
None come to mind other than the one suggested by my editor in this conversation as I submitted my review. If you're as surprised as we were how explicit this movie is, that's one reason we're happy to provide movie reviews.
Susan: I'm not sure R was really the correct rating... I feel like back in the day this might have qualified for an X. Modern times, I suppose.
CW: Goodness, I had no idea it went to those graphic lengths! Here I thought this was a simple challenge of "does love look the same in the light as the dark?"
Susan: I know, me too! It was an interesting story, despite the slow pace and multitude of sexual encounters of all kinds.
CAUTIONS (may contain spoilers)
- MPAA Rating: R for strong sexual content/nudity, and language
- Language/Profanity: Profanity scattered throughout, including a handful of f-bombs and the use of Jesus’ name as an expletive. Explicit sexual references and discussions of various sex acts.
- Sexuality/Nudity: Believe the MPAA rating when it says "strong sexual content." A lot of people have a lot of sex in this movie and little is left to the imagination. That includes nudity, bondage, a brief suggestion of bestiality and other… unusual… practices. An adult woman is shown taking a bath with her young (grade-school) nephew; she invites her husband to join them.
- Violence/Frightening/Intense: There are brief flashes of accident scenes that involve bloody injuries, a glimpse of a rotting cow, and a mildly icky encounter with a dead bird, but the real intensity comes from the creeping sensation that something in this story is not "right" – which is actually one of the best features of the film.
Drugs/Alcohol: Some drinking and drunkenness; smoking.
The Bottom Line
RECOMMENDED FOR: Probably no one, but fans of subtle psychological thrillers who aren't easily bored or offended might enjoy it.
NOT RECOMMENDED FOR: Movie-goers who prefer films where something actually happens; those who don't want to watch people having sex.
All I See is You, directed by Marc Forster, opens in theaters October 27, 2017. It runs 110 minutes and stars Blake Lively, Jason Clarke, Danny Huston, Ahna O'Reilly and Yvonne Strahovski . Watch the trailer for All I See is You here.
Susan Ellingburg spends most days helping to create amazing live events and most nights at the movies, at rehearsals, or performing with vocal ensembles in the Dallas area. This leaves very little time for cleaning house. A natural-born Texan, Susan loves all things British, Sunday afternoon naps, cozy mysteries, traveling with friends, and cooking like a Food Network star (minus the camera crew).
Publication date: October 26, 2017
Image courtesy: ©OpenRoad