The first few minutes that are going to browse through this “Nightmare Alley” have a nice we show explicitly the leak of a man before a past that he has tried to reduce to ashes, the character of Bradley Cooper long remained silent on-screen, preferring to blend in with the decor of the fairground world, where he is temporarily sheltering and work to the sides of his figures freaks solidarity.
This is the result of an incident, causing him to slip into the underworld of attraction oh so symbolic, that the character speaks his first words in the face of the less dazzling of the funfair. Because it is a major turning point in the film, the one who comes in the name of Stan Carlisle comes into effect, and without knowing it, to switch into a cycle of self-destruction where the repetition of the mistakes of the past will not leave any loophole possible.
As his character, who seeks to lose himself in the middle extravagant circus and its “monsters”, of fair to bounce, Guillermo Del Toro installs the pawns of his narrative in this fantastical world in correlation with the cinema that we know him, but where, this time, the illusion of the fantastic confines itself to the eyes of the crowd naively bernée to leave the front of the stage to the quackery and to his delusions that govern the side of its scenery.
Thus, it allows at the same time its sad hero to get an ability with which he thinks he finally has the existence and the place that he deserves in this world, freak show is also a part of the ideal departure for the director, who decided to leave his comfort zone in the direction of the film noir.
In fact, “Nightmare Alley” may seem to follow a trajectory classic of the genre says “black” for a long time focusing on learning the tricks of mentalism by Stan and then on his meteoric rise in the field (in addition to a few turns sentimental agreed) but in the shadows, the film does not forget in reality never highlight each of the choices irrattrapables taken by a character who is condemned to the same punishment for a past that he had thought to leave him behind.
Between the ingénue, and then the voice of reason, as portrayed by Rooney Mara and the femme fatale, the true serpent with a human face, masterfully pulled by Cate Blanchett, the thirst for ambition to ever dissatisfied with Stan (Bradley Cooper, perfect), will soon result in the scales cold of the second to lead them to the final stage of its progress infernal that will engulf permanently. The last part of this “Nightmare Alley” will be a success, at any point, making it live to Stan a flashback to the height of the consequences of his own blackness, now represented by bursts of violence unstoppable on the screen.
Having to stop to rhyme the course psychology of his character with the excellence of its staging and its art direction is flawless, “Nightmare Alley” will be completed on the revocation of the most inevitably cruel to which this cycle, and headed towards the dark side of the human soul could be driving, the mirror of sins past and to come, that we had detected in the early stages of the film will become a sad reality, leaving us on the most terrible of aftershocks and a laugh of despair total.
A great film noir. A great moment in the cinema. A great Guillermo Del Toro in the sum.
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