Under the Skin is a beautiful, sinister, and lovingly crafted Science Fiction film whose story is simple; yet it delves deep into humanity and what it means to be human. Seen through the eyes of an alien openly hidden in a human form, director Jonathan Glazer’s experimental filming style sees Scarlett Johansson released with hidden cameras into the unsuspecting general public of Glasgow. As she roams the streets, a celebrity among the public, like an alien among the human race, she charms her next victim into a white van.
The combination of stunning visuals with a chilling soundtrack and Johansonn’s icy, almost emotionless portrayal of an alien, whose task is to lure men into her trap, has made a film that produces a skin crawling effect. It reminds me of what I felt when I watched Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey for the first time.
This film is hard to describe, and hard to review, as no matter what you say it can’t describe the film to its fullest; it needs to be viewed and experienced. It is slow and a bit unnerving, not your easy-watch popcorn movie. However don’t let this put you off, every shot has been carefully considered and guides you through a journey that is part people-watching, part Sci-Fi thriller.
I knew little about this film before hand, but the harder it was to find at the cinemas the more excited I got about seeing it. With a later viewing at the Hyde Park Picture House I soon found it was totally worth the wait. I urge you all to seek out this film before it’s too late, especially those who want a film that’s a bit different. Even more so if you like intelligent science fiction films, or even just to see Scarlett Johansson in a role completely different anything else she has been in. This has to be by far one of my favourite films this year, alongside Her.