Promising Young Woman (2020) Poster

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Revenge has never been more colorful
rachellebogart15 January 2021
This movie blew me away. I went through basically the entire range of emotions before the movie was even over. It hit on everything that's made me so angry for such a long time. It was a vessel of that rage and it felt so good to see it depicted. More than that though, it felt like a story about the deep love we have for our friends. The message was amazing in my opinion.....and the ending was perfect!
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I Don't Leave Reviews- But I Had To
stephaniepincince29 September 2021
I watched the trailer for this one a few times before it was able to be streamed on my streaming service. It honestly did not have the ending I was hoping for- but I think it may have ended even better. The plot, the characters, the cute relationship between Cassandra and Ryan, the backstory, the plot twists (especially THE twist that made me "oh my God. NO." - I loved it ALL. I can't say I'm a huge fan of the main actress, typically, but she did a phenomenal job and deserves so much praise. This is a difficult topic and, at times, this was difficult to watch. But it's important that we talk about it. This one was good.
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Not a movie but a mirror
matrixdukenukem26 January 2021
Best thing about this movie is, it doesn't try to be clever or something it's not. Or maybe it's Carey Mulligan. Can't decide. It's a straight forward no nonsense revenge thriller that isn't like I spit on your grave or rather Hard Candy (which I expected it to be). It's just a very simple collective of 5 part story told cohesively and many people (on both ends and in middle) will find relatable.

Special mention to the father daughter scene.

Very well written, well shot, directed, scored and acted movie. And yes negative reviews are trying to sound clever but everyone knows they saw themselves in there.
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A sinister masterpiece
Wow - an acting masterclass from Carey Mulligan. And if this film can make one person think twice about taking advantage of someone who can't defend themself it has done it's job. But it's a lot more than a film that sends a powerful message. It is sinister entertainment at its best. Wonderful.
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As a guy I needed to see this
jerelinnanen19 March 2021
Just go see it with your mind open. Don't think about your own life, your ego or status. Let your guard down and take in the visually stunning genre glitch of a film Promising Young Woman is. Let it show you the Other Side.

It can help you understand so much. It can be painful, at first, but it allows you to have meaningful discussions with your friends. It's not about you. It's about the other 50% of the world's population that hadn't really had a voice before.

And what an terrifying, awesome voice it is. And only too justified.
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Very dark
nsfedyszyn29 December 2020
Darkest film I have seen in a very long time. It stays with you in a very uncomfortable way for days after viewing.

Casting and acting is spot on.

Possibly the best film I have ever seen.
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Must watch!!
padawanmovies22 September 2021
The subject matter is still sadly something that still needs to be taken seriously in today's society. Needs to be shown especially to college & high school students. Carrie did such a great job, I've never seen her play anything similar to this.
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Very, Very Good (And different)
sweetemotion228 December 2020
It's a comedy, but not really.

It's a thriller, but not really.

There's a romantic element, but it's certainly not a romance film.

I'm not sure exactly how to describe it, except to say that this film crosses several genres, and that I thought it was very creative and interesting. It reminded me a little of 'A Simple Favor', except not quite so dark.

Carey Mulligan is superb. Bo Burnham is very funny. I wanted to punch nearly every other male character in the film.
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Debut efforts have no business being this good
jtindahouse3 January 2021
I watched a lot of films in 2020 (167 to be exact) and gave only one of them a perfect 10/10 score. It took exactly one film in 2021 to match that. A sign of good things ahead hopefully. 'Promising Young Woman' is one of those rare treats of a film where you simply don't want it to end. Every aspect of it is perfect. Here's the kicker though - I couldn't wait to find out who the writer/director was afterwards. To my astonishment it was a debut effort from Emerald Fennell. Incredible stuff.

Where to begin with this film? I think my single favourite thing about it was the dialogue. It was so exquisitely written (and performed for that matter). So many films lack any imagination in their dialogue these days, but not this film. It can be charming, charismatic, intriguing, thoughtful, funny and a hundred things in between. Also the music in this movie was perfect. I particularly loved the Toxic instrumental and the use of Angel of the Morning at the end. This is a soundtrack I would buy.

I was aware of Carey Mulligan before this film, but incredibly I had never seen a single one of her films or television shows. I was blown away by how talented she is. The range she shows in one single character in 'Promising Young Woman' is almost beyond belief. I'm not sure if this is the type of film the Academy would ever recognise a performance in, but they absolutely should.

I can't say enough goods things about this movie. It hits every note perfectly. 'Promising Young Woman' was an absolute pleasure to sit through and a film that you simply can't afford to miss.
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The revenge thriller of the year!
nidhunmoviebuff21 April 2021
Promising Young Woman is a stunningly original revenge drama that shocks you, offers loads of dark humour and the same time makes you reassess every mildly sexist or politically incorrect statement/thought you have made/had in your life.

Director Emerald Fennel turns the mirror on all of us, ripping her narrative right from the headlines of famous sexual harassment stories happening around us.

Carey Mulligan is electric as the troubled 'Cassie', still reeling from the shock of losing her best friend. It is no surprise she got the nod for an Oscar Best Actress nomination.

Bo Burnham and Jennifer Coolidge shine in the supporting roles.

The best revenge thriller since Django Unchained for me. Two hours went by so fast, I didn't even realise it.

A must watch!

#MovieReview #SpoilerFree #OscarsBinge #PromisingYoungWoman #OscarNomineeForBestPicture.
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This one will stay with me for a bit
ebet9930 September 2021
I love a good revenge movie, but this one is a masterpiece that's going to stick with me for a while. Carey Mulligan is outstanding as a grieving friend who is seemingly cool and disconnected, but you can feel that she's burning from the inside to bring some justice and focus. It doesn't end prettily, but it definitely ends with twisted, poetic justice. Just watch the damned movie - it's worth the time.
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Rino_Bortone21 March 2021
Promising Young Woman is a hysterical and a solid-well-placed film right from the start, with an effective direction, with perfect-written dialogues and an excellent screenplay, but at the same time it paves the way in a very dark story, more serious than the one that seems to sneak up at the beginning, hidden by smiles and lightness that leave satisfaction in the stomach as the film progresses. Promising Young Woman is one of the most smart and brilliant thrillers of recent years, with a fantastic and meticulous Carey Mulligan, which carries the film frame by frame, emotion by emotion. Simply brilliant.
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Good topic and concept, unfinished execution
vithiet27 January 2021
I salute the effort to treat a topic too few movies are willing to tackle. But everything from the teasers to the promotion (imagery, posters, etc.) led me to believe the movie would push the concept a lot further than it did.. In the end I feel this would have made more of an impact if it had either gone a more serious/conservative and realistic route (some situations are quite implausible), OR the complete opposite, with someone being pushed over the edge and devolving into madness/violence a la Joker/John Wick. As it stands the movie is too middle of the road, not knowing what it wants to be, just like the main character and it left me unsatisfied.
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A hollow movie about a heavy subject
I remember seeing this trailer multiple times the last few times I went to the movie theater before the pandemic started, and I found the trailer pretty exciting. I thought, "Really interesting cast for this type of movie. This looks like it has potential, but it could go both ways..."

Well, ummmmmmm, it definitely went one way, pretty intensely. Not in a good way. The characters are so hollow it almost feels weird to even call them characters. They all feel like parodies of stereotypical archetypes. The protagonist is fully unlikable, and it's the first time I've seen Carey Mulligan in a role where she's as such. Like. yeah, obviously she's "fighting for a good cause", except she does it in a really horrible, counterproductive manner. It's difficult to tell what the director intended for the audience to feel while watching this film. At first, it feels like it's supposed to be a fun revenge-style B-movie, but you quickly realize that it's almost never funny even when it tries to be and it has almost zero violence, so, it actually has none of the characteristics that would make a B-movie fun. I also figured it would be campy, but it's mostly camp-free as well. It feels like they attempt camp on occasion but it falls flat, especially because it's so seldom and does not match the tone of the rest of the material. I feel like the movie would work way better if these dudes were getting their heads chopped off. On a similar note, there are a lot of attempts of creating either tension or emotional resonance by way of very serious subject matter, but due to the fact that the characters and script are otherwise so one-dimensional, they mostly all fall flat as well. There's not really anyone on the cast who does particularly well with this material, but I'm gonna chalk it up more to the writing and directing here. I'm sure they did the best they could. Alison Brie probably did the best out of anyone, but she's only in two scenes.

The last half hour was perhaps the only compelling part of the film, and the only part that features anything beyond surface level concepts. However, it had some pretty big plot holes IMO. You'd think the point of this film would be to make you cheer for the woman getting revenge on men, but the way it wraps up doesn't really give you satisfaction in that department, or any other for that matter. The wrap-up is intriguing and there were a couple of elements I was not expecting, but it also felt like it didn't actually make enough sense as an ending.

So, not many redeeming values here. What I do appreciate about the movie is its ambition. Other than that, almost nothing. I would not recommend.
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Rises above the typical revenge fantasy to become one of the most unique and intricately plotted films in quite a while
MrDHWong22 April 2021
"Promising Young Woman" is a revenge thriller film written and directed by Emerald Fennell. Starring Carey Mulligan in the lead role, it rises above the typical revenge fantasy to become one of the most unique and intricately plotted films in quite a while.

As she approaches her thirties, former medical school student Cassandra "Cassie" Thomas (Carey Mulligan) struggles to cope with the horrific assault and death of her best friend Nina several years prior. Still living with her parents and working a menial job at a coffee shop, Cassie tries to fill the void by going out to nightclubs and pretending to be drunk so that when men try to have their way with her, she can sneakily reveal to them she was sober the whole time. One day, Cassie's former classmate Ryan (Bo Burnham) visits her coffee shop and asks her out on a date where he informs her that the man responsible for Nina's death is getting married soon. Using this revelation to her advantage, Cassie comes up with a cunning plan to finally enact retribution on the person who killed her best friend and ruined her life.

Revenge films have remained a popular, albeit unchanged genre among audiences for a couple of reasons. Firstly, they allow the viewer the satisfaction of watching the victim gain the upper hand over the perpetrator(s) and secondly, they show how much a traumatic event can turn even the most mild mannered person into a force to be reckoned with. "Promising Young Woman" doesn't simply follow these tropes for the mere sake of telling a story, but also as an ingenious commentary on how modern society perceives victimhood and injustice for those responsible. Despite there being a multitude of proof that the culprit in question is responsible, it is shown that he has managed to evade punishment due to an apparent "lack of evidence", which sets things in motion for our protagonist Cassie in taking a more personal approach to bring him down. This echoes how things must be for many real victims out there whose pleas have fallen on deaf ears because of the negligent higher powers who do practically nothing to offer their assistance. Because of this, Cassie's vigilantism feels justified for the most part, as it is quite interesting to watch her piece together a brilliant scheme that is likely to be the fantasy of anyone who has had to go through what she did.

Making her directorial debut, Emerald Fennell handles this film with a surprising amount of confidence. Of course, Fennell is no stranger to the industry, serving as a writer and producer for the hit TV series "Killing Eve", but I think she feels right at home here in the director's chair. I liked her use of symmetry throughout the film, particularly during a scene where Cassie is contemplating if she should move ahead in her relationship with Ryan, reflecting how she is in two conflicting mindsets over whether or not she can still trust men. In addition to this, Fennell also displays her abilities as a writer, showing that she has clearly done her research on the sensitive topic of assault and murder. Several characters throw around the excuse that they were "just a kid back then" as though being at such a young age completely absolves them of any wrongdoing, much to Cassie's irritation. Such an excuse must be tiring to hear for real victims who have to deal with the pain of what happened to them for the rest of their lives and it is moments like this that remind the viewer of why Cassie is carrying out her elaborate plan in the first place.

After dropping off the radar for some time, Carey Mulligan comes back with a vengeance in the role of Cassie Thomas. Although her character didn't grab me at first, as she seemed like a sociopath who vents her frustrations on any man within her vicinity, I was pleased to see how over time she develops into a well-rounded and sympathetic woman whose actions become increasingly more fun to watch. It would have been easy for the film to have gone down the simple route of having every bad person be of the male gender, but we see that there are just as many women who are equally as responsible for the way events play out. Mulligan frequently shapeshifts her way through different costumes and makeup, some of which I didn't recognise her in right away, putting on a facade for any of the unsuspecting pawns in her scheme. Here, she demonstrates a range I never knew she had as an actress, which has me hoping to see more of her in future productions.

As far as revenge films go, "Promising Young Woman" is one of the most memorable ones to grace our screens in recent years. This is mainly due to how it is able to transcend the cliches and provide something clever with its biting social commentary on our justice system. Whether something will result from it is anyone's guess at this point but for now, we should just sit back and enjoy this entertaining romp for all its worth.

I rate it 8/10.
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Not just one story ... unfortunately
kosmasp26 August 2021
I reckon it is or will be easy to dismiss what happens here for some. Unfortunately that does not make the things that are depict in here untrue. From a male perspective you may see different valid points throughout this ... you may feel that certain things do not apply to you. And maybe they don't - that doesn't mean that they don't exist. I know it feels like I'm repeating myself ... something the movie does avoid.

Which is quite the feat, considering what it is about and how she goes on a hunt (prowl?) at nights ... I was not sure what she was doing and the movie did leave it upon a bit ... but it does clear up during the runtime. Now she is broken and we slowly get why that is. It is revealed in the right way, even while we do sort of know or feel that we know most of it.

What is a nice touch, we never see anything in that regard. There is no sleaze, there is no (visible) exploitation going on. That does not mean it is easy to watch ... or listen to what is happening. I personally am not a fan of the term feminist, but this movie may change your mind regarding that or other things.

There are borderline things happening and our main character is not perfect. That does not mean she does not deserve something good ... and it does look like she can have. If she can bring herself to let go ... on the other hand, there is more than meets the eye. Way more ... and the ending ... I'm not going to spoil it for you, but let's say I did not expect that at all.

Very well told and truths that do hurt ... but are essential to be seen ... and learned from (hopefully)
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Promising Young Woman Review
pedroborges-908816 February 2021
The film talks about a very delicate matter and does it very well, the key word for this movie is revenge, Carey Mulligan does a amazing performance, and Emerald Fennell also shows a lot of talent and boldness in her first feature film, written and direct by her.

The only negative point is the way some characters are putted in the movie to become essential to the history, but at same time they are also there to show more humanity on Mulligan character, so this is nothing that are going to ruin the experience to watch it.

Promising Young Woman is a film that have a strong message and need to be appreciated for it boldness and stile.
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mjfhhh15 January 2021
Once upon a time Cassandra was a promising young woman who was a brilliant medical university student. But it was all gone overnight. Now Cassie wanders the city streets at night, letting herself be taken home by strange men - all a part of an elaborate revenge plan... as people from her past re-surface and a chance of romance comes her way, will Cassie be able to leave her grudge behind and start anew?

It is hard to write a synopsis for PROMISING YOUNG WOMAN as almost everything may be considered a spoiler. It's that kind of story! The film has generated a lot of anger as it shows men in the worst possible light. However Director Emerald Fennell must be applauded for showing that abusers have no gender (two of the four film's main villains are female). Even our heroine Cassandra is a sort of an anti-hero, although our sympathies are always on her side.

This story is made complex by its script, that gives us only bits of information about what happened to Cassie in the past and what her intentions are.

An important part of the film is its soundtrack- clever upbeat covers of famous hits have an interesting double meaning, enhancing the scenes.

If not for the snappy dialogue, quirky characters and a sharp, not-a-scene-wasted script, this would be just one in a row of many rape-revenge thrillers that come cheap by the dozen. Instead PROMISING YOUNG WOMAN is wickedly funny, sometimes shocking, often sad, but always an irresistible thriller that pretends to be a comedy about the war of genders.

Constantly reinventing itself, building on its irony and comedy sketches, the movie delivers its sucker punch when you least expect it.
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Overrated Misfire
brandondugrey29 March 2021
The tag line for this movie is "Revenge Never Looked So Promising." But a more accurate tag would be: "Revenge Never Looked So Halfhearted."

Fennell's attempt at dark humour and social commentary falls flat at just about every turn. The screenplay is underdeveloped and loaded with plot holes (many of them defying all sense of logic); the characters are mostly stereotypes; the first shocking is twist all-too predictable; the direction is derivative of far more talented filmmakers and sluggish as well; and the second shocking twist in the denouement is both laughable and insulting at once.

I suspect the inspiration for this wildly uneven film came from three different sources. . .one from real life, the other two from fiction: Christine Blasey Ford's courageous testimony before the Senate Confirmation Committee, and the motion pictures "Elle" (a searing dramatic thriller about a rape victim bent on revenge) and "The Girl Most Likely To..." (a wickedly delicious dark comedy about a homely college girl who exacts revenge on her tormenters after reconstructive surgery turns her into a gorgeous bombshell).

The problem is, "Promising Young Woman" lacks the devastating poignancy of Dr. Ford's testimony, the simmering dark passion of "Elle", and the sheer joyful fortitude of "The Girl Most Likely To..." And so, in the final tally, it fails to deliver on all that promise.

It's worth noting that despite the film's many shortcomings, Carey Mulligan, Alison Brie, and Connie Britton all manage to deliver exceptional performances. Sadly, I will never get to see these performances again, because as good as they are, none warrant a repeat viewing of this disappointing misfire.
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Left, middle, right: It's a message for everyone to hear
ikillam6 October 2021
I have 3 little ones. Two boys and a girl. On one hand, I'd never want my sons to be accused of or punished for something they DIDN'T do, on the other hand I'd never want anything to happen to my daughter & then especially no one believe her. I myself went through my own "event" at a Halloween party almost ten years ago when I was a young 20 year old girl. I think what hurts more than the actual night, and the person who did it, it's all the family and close friends who didn't believe me, ignored me, or even blamed me. After a while you just stop talking about it. You shut it away. & Then this brilliant movie comes into your life. This movie sends two clear messages: It doesn't matter what you were wearing, how much you had to drink, your past relationships, if you made the first move... If you weren't cognitive enough to make a consensual choice, or you said no, or you fought it, seriously it WAS NOT your fault. And the other clear message, she gave each guy in the movie a chance to do the right thing and they chose not to. They actively chose to make the wrong choice. So, they were completely at fault and deserved their day of reckoning. I only wish I had a friend even half the character Cassie is in this movie. My best friend since we were children said it was my fault because I was dressed too sexy (I was dressed in a 1920's flapper costume from Walmart & had a hoodie on top of it). We haven't spoken in years because of that. Today, her words still haunt me more than that night and make me sick to my stomach. You're loved ones should have your back more than anyone. So the message of true devotion in friendship and sisterhood here was especially lovely. This isn't something that happens exclusively to only a certain type of woman, this happens to all women. & Movies like this will be how we put an end to it for our future, our children & loved ones.
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Never thought a stalker flick could be so much fun
StevePunchard3 October 2021
Contrary to the official descriptions, crime/drama/thriller which are all dark and foreboding, I thought this movie had a huge comedic side to it in the way the main character goes about her business.

Never a dull moment, the movie touches on several emotions: happiness / sadness, love / hate and befitting revenge. I believe it to be an overall excellent film, worthy of an Oscar nomination no less, for whatever mood you're in.
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Amazing, real and a mirror
tinynardo28 September 2021
If you did not like this movie, you are probably the problem. People dont like to see the truth.
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Not bad, not good
sergio-1400310 April 2021
Five Oscar nominations that invite five times the same question: WTF?

Is not a bad film, mind you. But it's just not good enough of anything; not Oscar-level performances, direction, writing, cinematography or editing. It would clean the Meh Awards, no doubt. But not the Oscars.

Then in the middle of the film there's a dance sequence that would embarrass the gaudiest Bollywood kitschfest. And the music cues punctuating drama and Oh-my-Godness during Cassie's speech to Al, is worth of any school production.

All in all, a good idea poorly executed. I cannot help thinking that with more back story and time to develop the conflicts, this would have made a best seller novel instead of a rushed, incomplete film.
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Raw Rage and Power Wrapped In An Explosion of Color
Golden_Hope27 March 2021
This movie is insanely good. I think the strongest reason for this is how much Emerald Fennell cared while making this movie. It is so detail oriented.

The story is so real while also playing on revenge fantasies. It knows it's story backwards and forwards and works like falling dominos. Nothing is done just for the sake of it and everything is like a chain reaction that pays off perfectly in the end.

People don't like the third act and at first I didn't until I saw the ending and I thought it was perfect.

The style of this movie. It is like a candy coloured nightmare and I love it. They light up the screen and the sets in such a perfect way. It makes every scene pop.

The score and soundtrack are amazing too. I really loved that Emerald payed so much attention to the soundtrack. She wanted to make it full of all these "guilty pleasure" songs and like "girly" music to show that there is nothing wrong with that music and it is good as well. I thought it was fantastic.

I honestly think that everyone should see this movie. Especially men. I like that it tells you that even people who think they are "good people" still can hurt others.

I think this is a near perfect movie. Watch it.
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Carey Mulligan rescued this movie from disaster.
kristian1014 January 2021
The script, dialogue and dramatic progress is very poor. The work of a debutant, badly advised by the production team.

The first hour feels extremely long, unfocused, uninteresting and stumbling in different directions. A frustrating experience.

Carey Mulligan is interesting in a - for her - quite unusual role - but it doesn't save the movie - it only saves it from being a disaster and a complete waste of time.
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