Within the opening minutes of the film, a desperate yet determined Louis Bloom states his motto to a potential employer: “If you want to win the lottery, you have to make the money to buy the ticket.” While these words might get overlooked thanks to the playful manner in which Bloom states it, this motto goes onto speak volumes about the moral ambiguity that lies ahead. “Nightcrawler” is a brilliant and unsettling character study of a man that is as twisted as he is persistent. As the film progresses, we get to see the disturbing transformation that Bloom undergoes. Bloom starts out a creepy loser who has to steal to stay afloat, and days later becomes a monstrous go-getter that will stop at nothing in order to become the success story he has dreamed about. The story of Louis Bloom just might be the most unconventional rags to riches story we have seen.

Jake Gyllenhaal in "Nightcrawler"

Jake Gyllenhaal in “Nightcrawler”

Making his directorial debut, writer Dan Gilroy brilliantly serves up a slow-burning thriller that is consistently intriguing and cynical. Gilroy offers an adept commentary about the media’s exploitation of violence. He superbly captures the all too familiar nature of local news, and shows how far some might be willing to go in order to achieve his or her goals. It is parts black comedy mixed with horror. It will make you laugh and then moments later it will make you flinch and squirm in your seat. Gilroy also showcases his talent for style and flair. It is shot with such ease and calmness that Gilroy’s piercing execution emphatically puts you into a hypnotic daze. With his beautiful backdrops and vivid images contrasted with pulse-pounding car chases, black comedy, and Lou’s willingness to do anything, “Nightcrawler” just gets under your skin. The film stays with you long after you view it, and it will make you hold a mirror up to our society and its media. 

As much as Gilroy does a fantastic job at creating a unique thriller that is a wild ride, “Nightcrawler” only succeeds because of the magnetic performance of Jake Gyllenhaal. In his most transformative performance to date, Gyllenhaal also gives his best. He is scary good. It is hard to describe how amazing Gyllenhaal is because it would simply not do him any justice. Jake Gyllenhaal inhabits creepiness and oozes with intensity, loneliness, and determination. Gyllenhaal’s Bloom is always thinking, always calculating, and always one step ahead of his companions and competition. He is also darkly comic and disturbingly confident and charming that it will make your skin crawl. Louis Bloom is a memorable sociopath that only gets bigger and bolder as you try to analyze him. His mysterious background mixed in with his reptilian like ways makes you notice that in order to get ahead in his society, ethics and morals might need to be put on the back-burner. Lou Bloom is a predator of the night that waits for the most opportune moment to strike. He may not be your traditional criminal but in the context of the 21st century he is as big a monster as they come.

It has enough humor and wit to be considered a black satire and definitely enough thrills to be seen as one of the best suspense films of the year. “Nightcrawler” offers a thought-provoking look at the media’s exploitation of violence and lack of morals; while, showcasing a scathing look at one man’s navigation through his amoral and ruthless ambition.

  The cast Includes: Jake Gyllenhaal (Prisoners), Bill Paxton (Titanic), Rene Russo (Two For The Money), and Riz Ahmed. It was written and directed by Dan Gilroy (The Bourne Legacy).

3.5 out of 4 stars

-By Louie Coruzzolo

In case you missed our video review for this week, check it out below:


Leave a Reply