All of Us Strangers Movie Review
In All of Us Strangers, a lonely dude in a lonely apartment building meets another lonely dude and one thing leads to another, including a dreamlike journey to his childhood. Unconventional but gorgeously alluring, the movie is quietly one of the better movies of the year.
Andrew Scott gives a terrific, emotional performance as the emotionally scarred Adam. Scott is at the top of his game here. Paul Mescal, who was nominated for an Oscar last year for his turn in Aftersun, shows he’s no one-hit wonder; he too is fantastic. Jamie Bell and Claire Foy round out the cast; both are also sublime.
Writer/director Andrew Haigh (who was the showrunner for the criminally underseen limited series The North Water) makes you feel as if you’re in a dream. Not necessarily a happy dream, but there’s something subtly immersive about the whole experience. The film is brimming with emotion; raw, deep, life-changing emotion that makes the hair on the back of your neck stand on end. The final scene in which Adam (Scott) interacts with his parents is one of the most heart-wrenching scenes of any to be found this year.
All of Us Strangers is a tragic film, and yet it’s oddly peaceful too. It’s also slow… not slowly paced, per se, but it’s the kind of movie that if you’re not vibing with what is happening will feel extremely long. Frankly, it’s the kind of movie that normally wouldn’t work for me, but between Haigh’s direction, the performances, and the pulsing, soul-piercing soundtrack/score, there’s very little to complain about.
While not a feel-good film, All of Us Strangers wraps around you like a warm, heavy blanket. It will be too slow for some viewers, but it’s the kind of movie that builds and layers as it progresses. If you’re patient with it, you’ll be unable to get it out of your mind.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.