Saturday, October 1, 2022

See How They Run

See How They Run isn't a perfect film, but there's plenty of fun to be had in the period murder mystery where all the suspects are actors, producers, and theater owners tied to a live performance of the genre where the victim is killed backstage. The semi-aware whodunit, set in London just after the 100th performance of Agatha Christie's (Shirley Henderson) The Mousetrap, involves the murder of the dickish director (Adrien Brody) planning on adapting the beloved stage play to film. 

A thoroughly unlikable victim by all accounts (including his own narration which begins the film), there are no shortage of suspects for the broken down Inspector Stoppard (Sam Rockwell) and the wide-eyed Constable Stalker (Saoirse Ronan) assigned to the case which the Commissioner (Tim Key) is far less concerned with than the serial murders occurring in London at the same time.

Suspects include the writer (David Oyelowo) who threatened the director's life and his hot-tempered traveling companion (Jacob Fortune-Lloyd), the producer (Reece Shearsmith) he was blackmailing, the theater owner (Ruth Wilson) whose contract was preventing a film from moving forward, and the star of the play (Harris Dickinson) who got into a physical altercation with the director the same night as the murder.

Director Tom George has fun with the period setting of 50s London without the need to go into full-blown nostalgia mode which is too often the case in period pieces. Ronan is delightful as the studious but inexperienced Constable as her pairing with Rockwell provides much of the film's humor as well as some internal conflict. Rockwell is in low-key mode for a performance he could literally do while sleepwalking while Ronan provides constant energy and a pop on-screen. I've always known she was a good actress, but her performance is a reminder she's also a movie star as well, capable of elevating the material she's giving and having fun with more lightweight stories (even if murder is involved).

Watch the trailer
  • Title: See How They Run
  • IMDb: link

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