Eye For Film >> Movies >> I Think We're Alone Now (2018) Film Review
I Think We're Alone Now
Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode
Del (Peter Dinklage) hasn't see another living person for months, and that's fine by him. Every day he visits a different house in his small northern town, burying the bodies of the people who died there and taking their overdue books back to the library where he works. He visits the supermarket or goes fishing on the lake for his supper, and in the evening he watches films on his laptop. Life is just about perfect. The he finds Grace (Elle Fanning) unconscious in a crashed car, and feels obliged to help her. it's a decision that he will - at least for a while - come to regret.
Grace crashes into Del's orderly life with the impact of her car hitting the kerb. She chooses out-of-life food because she misses eating junk. She puts books back on the library shelves in the wrong places. She adopts a dog who chews books. And she wants to stay. In her bright, outsized clothes, she veers between toddler and teenager, looking for a father figure or for a lover. Del doesn't want to be either. All he wants is a little peace and quiet, but throwing Grace out would feel like kicking a puppy. if there's nobody else alive on the planet, where would she go?
This odd couple film could easily have been mere farce, but the two leads, both on top form, imbue it with a warmth and pathos that breaks through in unexpected places. Despite Grace's emotional clumsiness, the film itself is sensitive and insightful; despite Del's stubborn cynicism, it's richly humorous. There are nods to numerous other post-Apocalyptic films (Grace says she's carrying a gun in case the dead suddenly get back up and feel hungry) but I Think We're Alone Now takes a direction of its own.
And then it changes. There's a twist towards the end that takes us abruptly into Seventies science fiction territory, finding entirely new sources of horror, absurdity and jet black comedy. Little details from earlier scenes suddenly need to be seen in a new light. Fanning finds new depths in her character and the bond that has developed between Grace and Del suddenly feels intense and vital.
Part of a new wave of films that are re-examining post-Apocalyptic narratives and the assumptions we make about how survivors should live, this a bold piece of work with a lot more on its agenda than simply making people laugh. It's also an affecting character study with some particularly cutting observations to make about the different experiences people have of civilisation as unwilling outsiders. And it's one of the funniest, most entertaining films of the year.Reviewed on: 13 Nov 2018