The Guilty

The Guilty ★★★½

2021 Ranked
Directors Ranked: Antoine Fuqua

I went into this one pretty much blind; I knew that it featured Jake Gyllenhaal almost exclusively, but in terms of plot etc. I knew nothing. And honestly, I think that's the best way to watch this (although to be fair, trailers are so spoilerific nowadays that maybe we should watch all movies like this).

But in this one, the way it is shot, being pretty much a single-location film with Jake on the phone ala Locke, lends itself well to the way they decided to tell the story, just drip-feeding information slowly throughout.

The film manages to keep you on the edge of your seat the entire time, and I think that's in no small part due to the fantastic performance of Jake Gyllenhaal. This performance is right in his wheelhouse of "overly-obsessive person with a hint of a dark side." He does it in Zodiac and also Nightcrawler. I have some holes in my Jake filmography but I am willing to say right now, of all the films of his I've seen, I think this is his second-best performance, right after Nightcrawler.

I do think the film is limited by it's premise as there really is only so much you can do from one location with one person. And this is seemingly a copy-paste of a Danish film from 2018 so some people might prefer to just go with that one. But this is definitely worth a watch. I think it's pretty solid.

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