VOD REVIEW: Marionette an intense study of grief that definitively goes off the rails

This pseudo-horror film plays more like a psychological study than it does a genre picture.

Marionette isn’t a bad film, but it squanders interesting acting and a wonderful premise by falling under the weight of its lofty ambitions.

Co-writer and director Elbert van Strien and co-writer Ben Hopkins attempt to weave an interesting tale with a huge pay-off. Unfortunately, best laid plans don’t always work out.

This is the story of a therapist – mired in her own grief – who feels her world begin to unravel when she takes on a 10-year-old patient and his difficult nature. But when he proclaims he can control her future, things get a bit complicated.

It’s a visually-stark film and a dark meditation on grief, loss and trauma that at some times works so well that you truly wish it was convincing the whole way through.

Thekla Reuten, a wonderful actress both across the pond and in America, is fantastic here. She’s joined by T2 Trainspotting actor Elijah Wolf, who steals the show here.

Marionette is almost saved by an incredible third-act twist, but it just all gets a bit too much to handle. In the end, it’s an exercise in ambitious filmmaking that goes just a bit too afield.

2.5/5 Stars

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