Review in Brief: Promising Young Woman (2020)

With PROMISING YOUNG WOMAN writer-director Emerald Fennell has crafted one of the most challenging and keen-edged debut films in years, and it’s making just the right kinds of people mad. Cassie (Carey Mulligan) spends her evenings pretending to be blackout drunk until a “nice guy” offers her help and inevitably tries to take advantage of her until she instantaneously “switches” from intoxicated to sober and turns the tables on the would-be predator. The motivation for this twisted pastime is revenge for the system failing Cassie’s best friend Nina who was raped at college years before, and soon she begins to enact her master plan for vigilante justice. Men will carry on doing this unless you confront them about it, and you hope along with Cassie that new boyfriend Ryan (Bo Burnham) turns out to be different to all the others. This black as pitch, scathing and brutal, but it’s compelling as can be, cathartic and has the most satisfying, gasp-inducing denouement in 2020 film. SSP

About Sam Sewell-Peterson

Writer and film fanatic fond of black comedies, sci-fi, animation and films about dysfunctional families.
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