Martha Marcy May Marlene is a powerful psychological thriller starring Elizabeth Olsen as Martha, a young woman rapidly unravelling amidst her attempt to reclaim a normal life after fleeing from a cult and its charismatic leader (John Hawkes). Seeking help from her estranged older sister Lucy (Sarah Paulson) and brother-in-law (Hugh Dancy), Martha is unable and unwilling to reveal the truth about her disappearance. When her memories trigger a chilling paranoia that her former cult could still be pursuing her, the line between Martha's reality and delusion begins to blur.
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It's a bit of a 'nothing' film really, one that if you try to explain the plot to someone you end up going "Um, well not a lot happened come to think of it..." A girl leaves a cult. The film chops between while she was in the cult to just after she left it - quite clever at times but also irritating. Elizabeth Olsen is faultless, reminding me of a young Vera Farmiga. It's also shot very well too. Everything apart from the story is done well, and that's where it falls down. An overly ambiguous ending coupled with a boring plot and sometimes confusing order of events. Disappointing.
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