This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
lizzie’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
So first, I (like almost every review I've read) 100% understand why people, especially women, have major issues with this film and they are valid. As a whole, I did like the movie but recognize there are many flaws to it, and is nowhere near perfect. For example, I was very turned off by the first hour of the movie in which Cassandra takes out her rage on women rather than the men, and I'm a little surprised to hear not more people discussing that aspect of the film.
I am fine however with Cassie not fully getting revenge in the form of violence against the rapists and even with her dying, and in turn, martyring herself. I think it speaks to a cycle of violence and how these cases never truly get full justice. If she had acted out against the rapists as she had planned (or not planned, do not have the brain space to discuss that yet), and walked out and lived happily ever after that would have been satisfying at first but rather a hollow and superficial ending that doesn't capture the true tragedy of how the system and the world treats women who have been raped.
However, I do not agree with the police coming in and saving the day in the end. With the police often the cause to why so many victims remain silent, it's very disingenuous to have them be seen in a heroic light.
So..... 4 stars because of Carey Mulligan's acting and more so the attempt to bring this extremely complex issue and conversation to the forefront.
Again, I 100% understand why women may hate this. I really think what Jourdain Searles wrote in Bitch Media sums it up perfectly:
"I’m asking: Is there a “good” way to craft a rape-revenge story? When you take into consideration that everyone’s trauma is different, and that coping mechanisms vary based on age, background, mental state, and dozens of other factors, it’s hard to say that any film that portrays a survivor fighting back can be altogether terrible or altogether good."