A troubled young man retreats from the big city and his ex-wife for the tranquility of a small town. He is drawn into a relationship with a young woman whose boyfriend goes missing, leaving the new arrival as a suspect.
After separation from his wife Robert moves to Vichy where he observes beautiful Juliette. Her fiance Patrick becomes jealous and attacks Robert. When Patrick disappears Robert is suspected to have killed him.
A young woman becomes inexplicably attracted to a man who is stalking her. When her boyfriend goes missing, the stalker is the immediate suspect, until a game of jealousy and betrayal turns deadly. Written by
I was drawn into this film by the uneasy feeling that the central characters were being drawn into a slow-sucking situational quicksand, an experience that for most of us only happens in nightmares.
If you prefer snappy pace and predictability in your films, move on. As the other reviews indicate, you either really like this film, or really dislike it for any number of reasons. At times I wanted to grab the "hero" by the shoulders and give him a shake to snap him out of his apparent lassitude. At that point I realized the movie was working for me, I was invested emotionally. Casting stays refreshingly clear of stereotypes with not a "pretty boy" in sight, and direction, performances and technical credits are mostly right on the mark.
This picture would have done so much better at the box office if it had let the potential audience know that Patricia Highsmith was the author of Hitchcock's "Strangers on a Train." For those of us not familiar with Highsmith's work, the title "The Cry of the Owl" is just too far removed from the essence of this film to be a draw.
So when you have the opportunity to see this film, relax, put your feet up and watch the first ten or so minutes. If you fall asleep, or find your mind turning towards undone kitchen tasks, then get back to "Jersey Shore" or whatever else gives your entertainment rush. If this film passes the ten-minute endurance test, you'll find it evolves into 100 minutes of compelling entertainment, destined to linger in the dark crannies of your mind for longer than you might expect.
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