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You Were Never Really Here

Until Thursday 22nd March

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Screens 1 & 2

Director: Lynne Ramsay

Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Ekaterina Samsonov

Rating: 15

USA 2018, 95mins

Joe (Phoenix) is a Gulf War veteran and former FBI agent turned killer-for-hire, specialising in saving victims from child sex rings and living at home with his ailing mother. When Nina, a US Senator’s daughter is kidnapped, he is contracted to dispense with the perpetrators and save the girl (Ekaterina Samsonov is hauntingly good). Having located Nina in a seedy New York brothel, Joe’s escape plan suddenly derails, unleashing a maelstrom of violence that takes him deeper into the darkness and closer to the truth.

Lynne Ramsay’s stark inversion of the noir thriller is a devastatingly brutal portrayal of one man’s battle with repression and abuse, anchored by a rage-fuelled, award winning performance from Joaquin Phoenix. Ramsay is more concerned with the psyche of her unhinged protagonist than she is with the action, and she eschews the spoken word in favour of Phoenix’s eloquent, line-ravaged face. Reuniting several of her key collaborators on We Need to Talk About Kevin, her taut, syncopated cinema is further intensified by Jonny Greenwood’s pulsating score.