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Under the Skin review: Scar Jo as alien robot might change the way we look at contemporary crime

The layers of Under the Skin are deep, and the human mind might have a hard time comprehending them at first. But after about 45 minutes of watching this new movie from Jonathan Glazer we learn of the strange and twisted world of a certain type of serial killing that really gets you wondering about organized crime and the simultaneous advantage of technology to produce a mass murder-type scheme in a way that’s totally like, UHHH what the f*ck? Oh, and it’s based on a novel by Michel Faber!

Under the Skin takes place in the Scotland countryside somewhere by the water (it’s gorgeous). Scar Jo is the femme bot that’s programmed to mass kill people by luring them in to her van, where she seduces them into following her through a strange house—stripping naked as they can’t help but follow that hot bod along some dark space where unlike her victims who sink in some weird black substance that never really is explained at all, making the book an even more intriguing-sounding read.

I will admit at one point I was just like, OK WHERE IS THIS GOING, WHAT IS THIS BLACK STUFF? However Glazer never failed to disappoint with the climactic scene of the dark, dark place this very, uhhh, let’s just say bloody and totally disgusting image of a whole other level of morbid that might ring as somewhat of a “tough” watch. Not to say you shouldn’t still see it because it’s honestly the greatest thing to happen in sci-fi in a while in that no one’s come close to doing anything like it before, but also that its visuals remind me of an way earlier Lynch-style display that’s memorable.

Mica Levi really sets the stage in this one with his unforgettable score playing along to a very moody film with its dull setting and also pays close attention to the human condition: the robot, unable to sense ugliness in people so that when she is trying to trick them into coming back to her creepy abode, she does not necessarily mind the victim’s oddly shaped face, or less than ideal body shape.

There is a whole other level of Glazer’s film that remains unexplained, like who was responsible for programming her (was it the guy by the water? Nobody knows)… Whatever the case, the audience leaves the theater asking questions. Which is not necessarily a bad thing nowadays, given all the really bad sci-fi movies that just leave you wondering why you wasted $15 (Glazer’s film is not a waste of $15).

(photo via Verge)

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Kaitlin Duffy is a writer from Cleveland. When she's not blogging or pondering the great complexities of the world and outer space, she is finding rare vinyl steals, visiting new places, laughing often, Instagramming everything in sight, watching movies, or working on her first feature Port de Cleve.