“Don’t Look Now” Review ✦✦✦✦✦

1 April, 2018

Year of Release: 1973
Nicolas Roeg
Allan Scott, Chris Bryant
Director of Photography: 
Anthony B. Richmond
Julie Christie, Donald Sutherland, Hilary Mason

Synopsis: Following a tragic accident which claims the life of their youngest child, an architect and his wife move to Venice where they are met by two sisters, one of whom claims to be able to see their dead daughter.

Don’t Look Now Review:

A film about anguish, love, and scarred memories playing out in an eerie setting which morphs to the shape of a grieving couple’s worst nightmare, “Don’t Look Now” ripples and reverberates in the presence of overwhelming tragedy, smartly observing an unstoppable spiral into hell which begins with a now iconic child death sequence. Terrifying in subject matter alone, the movie is unashamed to address unspoken issues, pairing catastrophe with clairvoyance in a bumpy marriage thriller which sees explicit love-making written to balance out a naturally gloomy temperament.

Observing an horrific parallel in harrowing opening and closing scenes, “Don’t Look Now” embodies the feeling on impending doom in a single image, haunting its own consciousness in the build up to an unforgettable twist. From lifeless bodies pulled from lakes to glass shattering in the lead up to certain trauma, the movie foreshadows and suffers alongside Sutherland’s tormented architect, adopting a curse which haunts his every move. Jumpy and sharp with intentionally abrasive qualities, “Don’t Look Now” manifests pure fear out of personal agony, revealing a premonition even more devastating than its shocking prelude as a lost father struggles to rationalise his grief while becoming blind to the silent killing spree taking place across the street.

Heightened by the confusion of foreign dialogue, “Don’t Look Now” shapes its suspense to amplify an already occurring language barrier, creating a sense of unease through muddled communication in a post-traumatic nightmare with danger around the corner. Creating distance through shared space, visionary director Nicolas Roeg explores the isolating qualities of the Venice canals which separate streets into echoing passageways where water tricks the eye and confuses the ear. While unnamed characters observe through windows, failing to provide assistance in the face of certain risk, the film leaves a single man utterly alone in all the chaos, trapping him in swirling misfortune as the certain victim in one of the most powerful finales in film history.


Review Date
Don't Look Now