The Woman In The Window is the best worst film ever made
Sorry but I’m kind of obsessed with it
Netflix’s new hit film The Woman in the Window is a shambles. In every sense of the word. Not a single scene in this film makes cohesive sense with the one before it. Everyone feels like they’re acting in a completely different film. Chaos reigns for every single second of it’s one and a half hour runtime.
But do you know what? It was kind of iconic.
A film this bad doesn’t come around that often. The Woman in the Window is a special brand of bad. It’s a special kind of dreadful. The kind you’re just desperate to show people so they can endure the ludicrous 100 minutes you’ve just sat through, feeding off their reactions and shocked faces of disbelief.
It begs the question: what makes a bad film? If a film is dreadfully made but still a romp, is it a bad film at all? Do we judge cinematic merit off its quality or off how good a time we had watching?
Wherever you stand on such a debate, there’s no denying that The Woman in the Window is a car crash. And here’s why I can’t take my mind off it. There are some spoilers, but you won’t care. I promise.
Why the hell did the cast sign on for this?
Jennifer Jason Leigh, Julianne Moore, Gary Oldman and Amy fucking Adams. Are you seeing this? These are four of the greatest actors Hollywood has. I need to know what dirt Netflix has over four Oscar nominees (and two winners) to get them to sign up for a script as cursed as The Woman In The Window. What was in it for them?
They need to release the salaries. We need the motivation for why the iconic star of Arrival AMY ADAMS signed up to be the lead in a film that made her run around frenetically and get a trowel shoved through her cheek.
The script is as bad as AJ and Curtis Pritchard’s Hollyoaks scene
Everyone in this film is talking tripe. Every time they open their mouths. If it was written as a parody of psychological thrillers, people would deem it too on the nose.
Every question is answered with another question. Characters in this film seems to be playing a big game of who can look the most guilty. Every time someone speaks it feels like they’re trying to look more suspicious than the person who spoke before them? Has the writer of this film ever met another human being?
For example, at one point Amy Adams’ character Anna calls the police after watching through the window as her neighbour gets a meat cleaver shoved into her abdomen. Anna tells the operator she’s just seen her neighbour crossed the street get stabbed. The operator’s reply?
“Anna… did you stab your neighbour?”
What kind of professional operator accuses the caller of murder? WHO TALKS LIKE THIS?
The police in this film are pure evil
It’s a huge trope in any thriller or horror that the police are a bit useless. Never acting until it’s too late and the bodies have piled up, etc, etc.
In The Woman in the Window, the police are just out and out horrible. They’re so rude and harsh. They don’t believe a word Anna says, and are actively spiteful in their response to literally anything she tries to tell them.
They might as well have just punched her in the face and left. It’s farcical.
The editing and cinematography is so chaotic that it actually gave me whiplash
At one point in The Woman in the Window a red apple flies towards the screen at you and a French voice exclaims UNE POMME! It’s then revealed Anna is using Duolingo on her phone… okay?
So often in this film, the editing and the direction lead you to believe the most dramatic thing on planet earth is happening when it just… is not. On Halloween, Anna’s house is egged by pesky neighbourhood kids but with the way she reacts to the whole thing you’d think they were throwing grenades. The saga ends with her collapsing and waking up face to face with Julianne Moore, who’s glowing like the Angel Gabriel because of course she is.
For some reason, the film spends about five minutes presenting a really chaotic and melodramatic scene where Anna’s lost her phone and is looking for it at SPEED. Eventually, she finds it on her bed and shakes the duvet (?) so the phone flies onto the floor. And instead of walking round to pick it up, she lies under the bed reaching for it whilst the music tries to make us think the phone’s about to fall into the sea or something.
The biggest editing question mark shows up when ANIMATED BLOOD SPLATTERS ACROSS THE SCREEN? Who okayed this? It’s literally inexcusable!
It decides it’s going to be a horror film for the final 10 minutes
At the end, the film just is like… okay, let’s pretend this is Scream!
Director Joe Wright tries to shove in every Hitchcock reference he can for a final showdown that feels so undeserved. There are so many stupid style choices made. Anna screams through some banisters for no reason, the murderous neighbour character drags his knife across the handrail aimlessly, Anna kicks him in the face and he flies across the room like we’re in a martial arts film.
Everything is manic. Then Anna gets a trowel in the face in a genuinely shocking moment of gore that just left me gasping in the same way she was with 3 prongs of metal in her cheek.
Netflix must have known this was shite?
The Woman in the Window’s outrageous nature has become such a talking point that I’m convinced it was intentionally done to get us all talking.
Joe Wright’s other films include Anna Karenina, The Darkest Hour and Atonement. Hardly the work of someone who would suddenly decide to direct a piece of mayhem cinema starring Amy Adams and a trowel. I wholeheartedly believe everyone involved in this film made it badly on purpose to get the world in a frenzy. Would everyone watch it if it was just an alright thriller? Probably not.
The Woman in the Window is an enigma of a film. Every scene has you out of breath at its sheer audacity. The dialogue is crap, the acting is dire and the direction made me feel like I was having a seizure.
I can’t wait to watch it again.