We Need to Talk About Kevin review

A woman struggles to come to terms with life following a high-school massacre at the hands of her son.

Skilfully edited (an attribute that contributes no small part to the film’s success), the story swings between devil-child Kevin’s formative years, the harrowing event itself, and, of most interest, the aftermath, and how Kevin’s mother, and those around her, handle the horrific ordeal.

A powerful script boldly directed demands exceptional performances and, luckily, the film features one of the best actors in the business, at her very best. You can’t help but sympathise with Tilda Swinton’s portrayal of a maddened character in a no-win situation and the rest of the cast support her admirably, Ezra Miller in particular, who makes Damien from The Omen look like a sweet little kid from a Disney movie.

Predictable criticisms that begin “in the book…” will no doubt abound. At times the hostility towards Swinton’s character feels a little too heavy but it is a struggle to find criticism of any real substance beyond that. The very best of the London Film Festival and one of the most riveting, technically proficient films of the year.

5 out of 5

21st Oct 2011 | Official site | On IMDb