Thoroughbreds

 

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A promising new talent delivers a stylish black comedy with Olivia Cooke and Anya Taylor-Joy.

 

Thoroughbreds

Anya Taylor-Joy and Olivia Cooke

  

Cory Finley makes a remarkable directorial debut with this stylish, dark comedy which, although conceived as a stage play, is a highly cinematic experience that never loses its claustrophobic premise.

 

It tells the story of Lily (Anya Taylor-Joy) and Amanda (Olivia Cooke), two teenage girls in Connecticut, who renew their childhood friendship when Amanda’s mother asks Lily to help her daughter with her studies. But their first encounter takes on an unexpected turn when they decide to make a plan to get rid of Lily’s loathsome stepfather Mark (Paul Sparks)...

 

The lead performances by these highly promising young British actresses are outstanding and both are very believable as American teenagers. Cooke is terrific as the girl with no feelings while Taylor-Joy is very strong as her complete opposite. And, like the protagonists in Heavenly Creatures, they both need each other in order to fulfil their destiny. They are well supported by Anton Yelchin (sadly in his last role before his death) as Tim, the confused drug dealer drawn into the girls’ evil plans. In short, it is a mesmerising and unpredictable film shot in giant close-ups with elegant production design from a great new talent. Not to be missed.

 

GEORGE SAVVIDES

 

Cast: Olivia Cooke, Anya Taylor-Joy, Anton Yelchin, Paul Sparks, Francie Swift.

 

Dir Cory Finley, Pro Andrew Duncan, Alex Saks, Kevin J. Walsh, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, Screenplay Cory Finley, Ph Lyle Vincent, Pro Des Jeremey Woodward, Ed Louise Ford, Music Erik Friedlander, Costumes Alex Bovaird.

 

June Pictures/B Story/Big Indie Pictures-Universal Pictures.

92 mins. USA. 2017. Rel: 6 April 2018. Cert. 15.