Keep up-to-date on your favourite artists and movies, track gig and release dates, and join in the conversation.
SEARCH RESULTS FOR
25 years ago, 'Clerks' was the low-budget comedy that took the world by storm. Click here to relive it in Jess' retrospective review!x
review, Under The Silver Lake, Under, The, Silver, Lake, film, movie, latest movies, new movie, movie ratings, current movie reviews, latest films, recent movies, current movies, movie critics, new movie reviews, latest movie reviews, latest movies out, the latest movies, review film, latest cinema releases, Australian reviews, cinema, cinema reviews, Andrew Garfield, Riley Keough, Topher Grace, Jimmi Simpson, Riki Lindhome, Zosia Mamet, Callie Hernandez, Patrick Fischler, Don McManus, Summer Bishil, David Robert Mitchell film rating

UNDER THE SILVER LAKE

NOT SO DEEP

THEATRICAL REVIEW
LATEST REVIEWS
By Ashley Teresa
12th May 2019

Over the last year, ‘Under the Silver Lake’ has garnered a cult-like online following - a surprising feat given the film took literally months to see the light of day. The constant reshuffling of the film’s release piqued audience interest but, for some, didn’t lend itself to confidence that director David Robert Mitchell had been successfully able to follow up his previous masterpiece, the sex horror ‘It Follows’. Unfortunately, the most interesting thing about ‘Under the Silver Lake’ is its half-assed release.

Andrew Garfield (‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ franchise) stars as Sam, a new class of cinematic voyeur for the 21st century. He passes his days in an unremarkable manner, smoking pot, following conspiracy theories in comics, and perving on his neighbour - that is, until a beautiful woman named Sarah (Riley Keough, ‘American Honey’) moves into his apartment complex. This isn’t just lust; his draw to her is magnetic. After a chaste night of bonding, Sam visits her apartment the next day, only to find that Sarah, her roommates and her belongings are gone. Maybe it’s his ever-growing paranoia about the world around him, or maybe it’s his attraction to her, but Sarah’s vanishing act sends Sam on a wild goose chase for answers through the streets of Los Angeles.

'UNDER THE SILVER LAKE' TRAILER

Sam’s search is misguided and aimless, a metaphor for the film itself. The sense that this film doesn’t want to be taken too seriously is apparent thanks to numerous jarring instances of outlandish musical cues or jokes (there’s a brief but brilliant scene where Garfield shakes off a Spider-Man comic stuck to his hand). As tempting as it is to say "Oh, what the hell" and go along with the film’s absurd wanderings, so much of the film feels simultaneously pretentious and soulless that it held me at arm’s length the entire time. A key ingredient to the mystery genre is actually giving the audience a reason to care in the first place, but ‘Under the Silver Lake’ doesn’t bother to give one beyond morbid curiosity to see how strange the film can go. The film doesn’t do itself any favours either with the run time of 140 minutes. Mitchell obviously wants to create a sprawling world full of hidden clues, symbols and intrigue, but when the story itself is so dull, it feels unjustified and excruciating.

There are small glimmers of hope that ‘Under the Silver Lake’ wants to scratch the surface of deeper ideas, and relevant themes of toxic masculinity and the male gaze in L.A. are the perfect setup for the film to do so. But before any of these themes can be explored or critiqued in any way that could give it meaning, the film decides to drop them dead in the water, preferring rather to bathe in its absurd humour. I don’t want to say this is a matter of style over substance, but the film works overtime to earn that label.

The film doesn’t bother to give a reason to care beyond morbid curiosity to see how strange the film can go.

The one saving grace is its smooth, foreboding cinematography, even if it’s not really showing us anything all too interesting. Mitchell wears his noir influences on his sleeve; films like ‘Rear Window’ and ‘The Long Goodbye’ are explicitly referenced, but this doesn’t work in ‘Under the Silver Lake’s' favour at all. Imitation might be the sincerest form of flattery, but not so much when paying homage to great films just makes the chasm of quality between them and this one even wider.

Much of ‘Under the Silver Lake’ feels like Mitchell wanted to throw as many left-field camera angles, score swells, and strange attempts at humour at a wall to see what would stick. Sadly, most of the time, the film doesn’t feel nearly as compelling as it wants to be. It mirrors Sam’s search for answers, delving into the tiniest details and coming up with not a lot of meaning at all. It’s even more disheartening, considering that ‘It Follows’ showed the world that Mitchell can masterfully create ambiguous dreamscapes. With ‘Under the Silver Lake’, his ambition is undeniable, but by the time the credits roll it just feels like a whole lot of treading water for no reason.

FAST FACTS
RELEASE DATE: 20/06/2019
RUN TIME: 2h 20m
CAST: Andrew Garfield
Riley Keough
Topher Grace
Jimmi Simpson
Riki Lindhome
Zosia Mamet
Callie Hernandez
Patrick Fischler
Don McManus
Summer Bishil
WRITER/DIRECTOR: David Robert Mitchell
PRODUCERS: Chris Bender
Michael De Luca
Adele Romanski
Jake Weiner
www.UnderTheSilverLakeMovie.com
UnderTheSilverLake
SilverLakeMov
UnderTheSilverLake
TOP-RATED REVIEWS
After the Wedding - Michelle Williams & Julianne Moore's glamorous outing
TRENDINGWIN AFTER THE WEDDINGMichelle Williams & Julianne Moore's glamorous outing
Promised - Love is never perfectly arranged
TRENDINGWIN PROMISEDLove is never perfectly arranged
The Keeper - True story of WWII prisoner to soccer superstar
TRENDINGWIN THE KEEPERTrue story of WWII prisoner to soccer superstar
British Film Festival 2019 - Your ticket to the hottest festival in town
TRENDINGWIN BRITISH FILM FESTIVAL 2019Your ticket to the hottest festival in town
Balloon - Courage takes flight
TRENDINGWIN BALLOONCourage takes flight
Promised - Flashback to Australian-Italians in the 1970s is a bland affair
TRENDINGPROMISEDFlashback to Australian-Italians in the 1970s is a bland affair
Pavarotti - A perfunctory portrait of an opera superstar
TRENDINGPAVAROTTIA perfunctory portrait of an opera superstar
Ride Like a Girl - Melbourne Cup biopic plagued by race's questionable history
TRENDINGRIDE LIKE A GIRLMelbourne Cup biopic plagued by race's questionable history
Locusts - A low-key, low-down thriller
TRENDINGLOCUSTSA low-key, low-down thriller
25 km/h - A supremely easygoing German comedy
TRENDING25 KM/HA supremely easygoing German comedy
Little Monsters - No brains, all heart
TRENDINGLITTLE MONSTERSNo brains, all heart
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil - Disney still have some magic left in them
TRENDINGMALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVILDisney still have some magic left in them
Midsommar - Ari Aster brings the gore but lacks the emotion
TRENDINGMIDSOMMARAri Aster brings the gore but lacks the emotion
Five Feet Apart - Breathing borrowed air and clichés
TRENDINGFIVE FEET APARTBreathing borrowed air and clichés
25 years since Clerks - The Impact of Kevin Smith on an unsuspecting Hollywood
TRENDING25 YEARS SINCE CLERKSThe Impact of Kevin Smith on an unsuspecting Hollywood
Blinded By The Light - The spiritual sequel to Bend It Like Beckham
TRENDINGBLINDED BY THE LIGHTThe spiritual sequel to Bend It Like Beckham
Revisiting 'Dark City' 20 years later - The most underrated and influential sci-fi film ever?
TRENDINGREVISITING 'DARK CITY' 20 YEARS LATERThe most underrated and influential sci-fi film ever?
Zombieland: Double Tap - The gang's back for a brainless zombie comedy sequel
TRENDINGZOMBIELAND: DOUBLE TAPThe gang's back for a brainless zombie comedy sequel
NT Live: Fleabag - The birth of Phoebe Waller-Bridge's masterwork
TRENDINGNT LIVE: FLEABAGThe birth of Phoebe Waller-Bridge's masterwork
Gemini Man - Ang Lee vs Ang Lee: has technology gone too far?
TRENDINGGEMINI MANAng Lee vs Ang Lee: has technology gone too far?
© 2011 - 2019 midnightproductions
All rights reserved

Support SWITCH | Disclaimer | Contact Us