Martha Marcy May Marlene (2011) Film Review


Martha (Elizabeth Olsen) has returned to her sister Lucy (Sarah Paulson) and her husband Ted (Hugh Dancy) after an absence of two years. Martha told them she’d been living with a boyfriend who lied to her when, in fact, she’d been living and being abused in a cult led by Patrick (John Hawkes).

What is annoying about this film is that you feel that Lucy and her husband would be do much better able to help Martha if she told them, but she is so traumatised that she is unable to tell them. It’s a very beautiful film, but very difficult to watch – many of the really stunning scenes are accompanied by penetrating whining sounds that do not allow the audience to relax for a moment.


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