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Kwei’s Film Reviews-18--Oscar 2024 : “Anatomy Of A Fall”


mage depicts a suspenseful scene in a snowy setting with a wooden cabin in the background. A figure lies motionless in the snow with red coloring around the head to simulate blood, representing the character Samuel whose killer remains unknown, emphasizing the unresolved mystery of the narrative.
The Unanswered Mystery: Who killed Samuel Maleski? (Image Leonardo-AI)


Plot Overview

"Anatomy of a Fall" plunges us into a chilling narrative where Sandra Voyter, portrayed by the spellbinding Sandra Huller, becomes the prime suspect in her husband Samuel Maleski's mysterious death. Samuel (Samuel Theis) meets a tragic end, falling from a window onto the snowy ground below. The question that haunts every frame of this gripping drama is whether it was an accident or cold-blooded murder. The couple's half-blind son is ensnared in a moral quandary, torn between the truths he holds and the secrets he knows.


Cast Highlights

Sandra Huller as Sandra Voyter delivers a mesmerizing, nuanced, and compelling performance that effectively draws the audience into the labyrinth of her character's psyche almost all the way. One suspects there’s much we don’t know.

Behind the Scenes

Juliet Triet is at the helm as the director and co-writer of this film alongside her collaborator Arthur Harari. Triet was fascinated with the 2016 Netflix documentary about Amanda Knox, which is an inspiration for this film. "Anatomy of a Fall” clinched the prestigious 2023 Palme d’Or award. NEON is the American independent production and distributing company behind the film.


Commentary

European and Scandinavian filmmakers craft deeply authentic stories with exceptionally well-written dialogue, and "Anatomy of a Fall" follows that tradition. While it might be tempting to call the film a whodunit, it transcends the genre to explore the deep-seated secrets and inner turmoil of Sandra Voyter. The film is rife with tension and an unsettling sense of ambiguity that challenges the viewer's perceptions and allegiances. The ambiguous ending further accentuates the film's departure from conventional narratives, inviting the audience to ponder the complexities of truth and deception. Was it a murder? And, beyond the usual, what’s the added significance of the dog, Snoop? The film may simmer with a slow burn that burns out before ever igniting to its full potential, but it leaves an indelible mark on the viewer.


Wrap-up and Rating


"Anatomy of a Fall" earns a well-deserved 4.5 stars, with its exceptional acting, skillful directing, and superb screenplay. While the storyline flirts with the possibility of a traditional whodunit, it instead chooses a path less trodden, focusing on its protagonist's intricate character arcs and psychological depth. The ambiguous ending may leave some viewers dissatisfied, but it shouldn’t be a deal-breaker in the context of the entire achievement.


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