Friday, 31 March 2017

"The Autopsy of Jane Doe" (Guardian 31/03/17)

The Autopsy of Jane Doe **
Dir: André Øvredal. With: Brian Cox, Emile Hirsch, Ophelia Lovibond, Olwen Kelly. 86 mins. Cert: 15
No cutting around the take-it-or-leave-it conceit of Troll Hunter director André Øvredal’s English-language debut: for ninety minutes, this is a woman’s naked corpse being poked and prodded by two men. Granted, Brian Cox and Emile Hirsch – as father-and-son morticians – display vital flickers of humanity in parsing the clues secreted in their charge’s cavities. Yet they’re helpless once this fleshy Pandora’s box is opened and the matter of whether the film is operating in a procedural or supernatural key is decisively resolved. The second half’s merely morbid runaround, punctuating its soundtrack crashes with self-justifying footnotes on historical misogyny. Øvredal keeps matters brisk, while porting over a very Scandinavian air: it’s functional VOD filler, but chilly with it. 

The Autopsy of Jane Doe opens in selected cinemas from today.

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