Netflix’s psychological thriller will be stuck in your head for weeks
With an enviable career, director Brad Anderson has taken his place in the famous pantheon of filmmakers who make their big films before the age of forty. The very year he completed his four-decade career, in 2004, he bequeathed The Worker, in which an unbelievably haggard Christian Bale made flesh (and, mostly, bones) as a train driver who caused a serious accident with a co-worker because he couldn’t sleep. Fifteen years later, in 2019, Anderson, though without the same success as the play with Bailey, gives a surprise twist to Fratura that is very personal. Balancing the structures of classic suspense, the director brings a seemingly incoherent story, and even worse if we compare the introduction and the ending separately. Since the film, of course, cannot be judged only by the beginning and the end, to understand the end, we must pay close attention to the beginning – even more so in “Fracture”.
Reluctantly, Ray Monroe, played by Sam Worthington, takes his wife Joan, played by Lily Rabe, and daughter Perry, Lucy, from Capri so that the three of them can spend Thanksgiving at their son-in-law’s house. Ray stops at a gas station to buy soda, brandy, and batteries for a toy that Perry is distracted by while on the road, but what should be a perfectly normal thing soon turns into a nightmare. The convenience store doesn’t accept credit cards, and Ray only buys necessities that don’t include batteries. He goes back to the car, opens the back door, pours the soda on the seat, and between cursing and cursing, Perry jumps out. In a crescendo of the story’s atmosphere of total unpredictability, a dog appears and scares the girl, who walks away, until Ray, before chasing the dog away, throws a rock at the animal as it sneaks away; Even so, Perry is frightened and falls from a great height. In an attempt to save her, Ray rushes in her direction and they both go to the hospital.
Perry could only break his arm because he might as well have internal bleeding, but if his case was really that serious, he would surely die, thanks to the excessive bureaucracy and useless protocols set by the facility – especially those related to how, if you’re going to pay the bill and Ray’s health insurance is not accepted there – full of employees who can barely hide their psychopathy behind their uniforms, who cannot empathize with the suffering of others, and maybe, deep down, they even like to watch these people suffer from the cabin. When he is contacted after an eternity by Steven Tobolowsky’s friend Dr. Bertram, Perry is sent underground to conduct some tests. Ray returns to the hallway and the excruciating litany begins again.
From then on, the “fracture” becomes an escalation of panic in the form of the sudden and unexplained disappearance of Perry and Joan, an argument that Robert Eggers subtly uses in “The Witch” (2015). No one knows about them, and the first idea that worries the audience is about a possible conspiracy against Ray, who is suspected of neglecting his daughter from the moment she set foot in the hospital, even through the receptionist. As the story progresses, a new, even more brutal perspective emerges: Worthington’s character would come in alone, already medicated and released, without Perry or Joan. The protagonist’s saga begins by convincing the authorities, who are called upon to contain the disorder he has provoked, that he is holding his daughter and his wife captive in the hospital, perhaps for appeasement and to serve a purpose far from reconstruction.
Alan B. Written by McElroy, the author of Panic in the Woods (2003), directed by Rob Schmidt and soon developing into a powerful franchise, the film turns the film into a nightmare for Ray and an unbearably tragic one when he wakes up. The corridors of the hospital seem to get a little longer with each sequence, as if those white walls had the ability to swallow a person, and they do. The progress of the plot is compromised by the stubbornness of the central character, admitting the obvious – too harsh a reality for him, and a major plot twist, with less than eight minutes to the finish line. “Fracture” reminds us of David Cronenberg, but with shamefully empty places; Dialogues are not distinguished by originality, but there are well-crafted breaths, punctuated in time. What can’t be overlooked, however, are the dramatic arcs that unfold along the way, especially Joan’s. The sequence that explains the moment when the character played by Lily Rabe begins to lose her husband and why she begins to awaken in him the feelings that Ray impulsively shows, a circumstance that diminishes what is seen at the end, was essential. feature.
The passage that closes Fratura, a portrait of a family trying to rebuild itself in vain, is certainly the film’s pinnacle and, frankly, one of the most lyrical moments in recent cinema history. It’s impossible to say that this is a great work of Brad Anderson, but “Frtura” fulfills what it promises. On second thought, it even provides much more.
direction: Brad Anderson
year: 2019 year