For Reel

Naked (1993)
April 30, 2011, 8:05 pm
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: Mike Leigh

Perhaps the most brutal of Mike Leigh’s films, which often involve secluded, hopelessly lost men and women, Naked succeeds with the performances of Lesley Sharp, Katrin Cartlidge, and the star-making turn by David Thewlis. It takes a lot to make a character as despicable as Johnny – who, in the first scene of the film, is raping a woman in an alley – sympathetic to the audience, however Thewlis is successfully charming even during his long-winded tangents wherein he relays conspiracy theories about the impending apocalypse. Just as many of Leigh’s films deal with people who have simply fallen by the wayside socially, Naked suggests that Thewlis’ character is an undiagnosed manic depressive, discarded and left to fend for himself on the streets.

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