Mandy (2018)

Director: Panos Cosmatos
Writer: Panos Cosmatos, Aaron Stewart-Ahn
Cast: Nicolas Cage, Andrea Riseborough, Linus Roache, Ned Dennehy, Olwen Fouéré, Richard Brake, Bill Duke
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 20.9.2018

Red (Nicolas Cage) and Mandy (Andrea Riseborough) couldn’t be happier with each other. They live remotely and they live mostly for each other. But their intense togetherness is not only disrupted, it is destroyed when Mandy catches the eye of Jeremiah Sand (Linus Roache), the leader of a local cult. Jeremiah shows up at Red and Mandy’s home ready to do everything to get Mandy to himself.

Mandy starts off well enough, but after the first hour or so, I lost interest in it. It’s intriguing, and as an opening to this year’s /slash Filmfestival it was well-chosen, but it just didn’t work all the way through.

The film poster all in red hues, showing various of the film's characters.

I really loved the first hour of the film. It was idiosyncratic and strange, visually formidable and absolutely hypnotic. I felt entranced and enchanted and I was absolutely with Red and Mandy. The film creates an astounding sense of intimacy. If the film had just been them, I think I would have been happy with it.

But after an hour or so, things take a turn into bloodbath territory and I just didn’t care for that part, despite the continually strong visuals. I have seen so many cinematic bloodbaths in my life, I would have rather stuck with the unusual way Red and Mandy’s love is unfolded for us and kind of continued to surf that special atmosphere.

Nicolas Cage in the film.

It is very possible that on a different night, the second half would have worked for me as well. And it may have just been the insufferable temperatures in the cinema that I quite literally ran out of air and didn’t have the energy anymore to be interested. Add to that that the soundmixing wasn’t great and the soundtrack was too loud at times and the dialogues too soft and there was a certain exhaustion that just really made the film too long for me.

That being said, Mandy is a film that is worth experiencing. Just make sure that the climate is more controlled than where I was.

Linus Roache in the film.

Summarizing: Interesting.

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