Stonehearst Asylum Review

Stonehearst Asylum is a 2014 psychological thriller film directed by Brad Anderson, starring Kate Beckinsale, Jim Sturgess, Michael Caine, Ben Kingsley, and David Thewlis.  The film follows Dr. Edward Newgate who transfers to Stonehearst Asylum, discovering that the asylum is run by the very inmates it was created to house.


Positives:

  • Great performances
  • Interesting story
  • Well paced
  • Interesting
  • Great design

Negative:

  • n’a

Plot: First, let’s just say that this movie has a brilliant concept.  It does a great job of gradually unveiling the twist of the patients running the facility.  The film ends on a great note and even manages to fit another twist into the story. And as a last point, the story does depict the inhumane treatment that most patients of that time had to deal with so there is that undertone that was addressed. (4 out of 5)

Characters: There are some stand out characters.  Edward (Sturgess) is the main protagonist of the film and a great character, and the guy has a lot depth.  He has good chemistry with Eliza (Beckinsale), who Beckinsale portrays brilliantly.  But the stand out character is Lamb (Kingsley).  His completely mad but it’s not because he’s a cruel person but because he’s seen that same cruelty and actually cares for the patients.  Finn (Thewlis) is the douchebag of the film and is as unlikable as they come. Other appearances include Michael Caine, Brendan Gleeson, and Sinead Cusack.  (3 out of 5)

Cast: This film has a terrific cast who give great performances.  Sturgess does a good job as the character Edward, making the character likable and someone to root for.  Great performances by Kingsley and Beckinsale. Thewlis does a great job as Finn.  Definitely nailed the psychotic appeal to the character. (4 out of 5)

Visuals: Great use of practical when it comes to the set and clothing designs.  There is a grim, isolated look to the film while maintaining a tense atmosphere.  Even when it comes to the landscapes, there is a certain level of appeal.  (4 out of 5)

Score: The score is good and and John Debney displays a brilliance with its subtlety. (3 out of 5)

Writing: Brad Anderson does a great job with this film and not only with the characters but with the overall execution.  Of course, the use of editing does a great job of maintaining the film’s mystique as things are gradually revealed.  Pretty good pacing as well.  (3 out of 5)


The Verdict: In the end, Stonehearst Asylum is a great film.  Not only does the film have good direction, but with the interesting characters, great performances, compelling story, and overall execution, Stonehearst Asylum gets 4 out of 5.

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