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So-so stalker drama features great performances from Isabelle Huppert and Chloë Grace Moretz
"Greta" (2018 release; 98 min.) brings the story of Greta Hideg. As the movie opens, we see Greta walking away from the subway. Moments later, a young lady (we later learn she is Frances) finds a purse left behind in the subway. In the purse is a NYC ID card, and when Frances drops by Greta's to return the purse, Greta is overjoyed and invites her in for coffee. The two hit it off and Frances returns to help Greta pick out a dog at the animal shelter. Greta confesses to being very lonely. Then, Frances makes a startling discovery at Greta's house... At this point we are 15 min. into the movie but to tell you more of the plot would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments: this is the latest from writer-director Neil Jordan, who won an Oscar for the screenplay of "The Crying Game" all those years ago. Here he brings us an unlikely, if not implausible, stalker drama (and more?). It is very clear from early on exactly how this all is going to play out, yet Jordan still felt it necessary to pepper the scenario with moments that just make you shake your head. Just one example: when the stalking is going full-scale, Frances is worried about running into Greta again. Wouldn't you know it: of the thousands of random subway stops and cars, Frances gets on and who's on that very same subway car? You guessed it, I mean, c'mon already! It's a darn shame as the lead performances from Isabelle Huppert and Chloë Grace Moretz are quite enjoyable, but they can only do so much with a script that is riddled with implausible moments and/or utterly predictable overall story lines.
"Greta" premiered at last Fall's Toronto International Film Festival, and it finally was released wide this weekend. The Friday early evening screening where I saw this at here in Cincinnati was attended poorly (6 people, including myself). I honestly can't see this movie lasting long in theaters.For that it is too uneven and frankly just so-so. But I did enjoy the performances from Isabelle Huppert (now 65 years young, if you can believe it) and Chloë Grace Moretz. If you are a fan of stalker movies and some such, I'd readily suggest you check this out, be it in the theater, on VOD or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray, and draw your own conclusion.
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