An unusually brutal, gory and suspenseful thriller that has a lot on its mind, “The Woman” comes to us from Lucky McKee, writer- director of the funny psycho tale “May” and the hilariously dark “Masters of Horror” episode “Sick Girl.”
It's the story of a family man and attorney who captures, imprisons and does a lot of other things to a wild woman who may have been raised by wolves. Helpfully, McKee cast as the primitive wolf girl one Pollyanna McIntosh, who looks a lot like a supermodel once one scrapes off all the mud and blood.
(It may prove a little tricky to buy that someone as primitive as the title character could be lurking proximate to a lawyer’s country home, but I was happy to suspend my disbelief in service of the greater narrative.)
Evoking by turns such diverse fare as “Splice,” “I Spit On Your Grave,” “The Stepfather,” “The Great Santini,” “Welcome to the Dollhouse” and “The Shining,” “The Woman” builds slowly to a final, bugnuts half-hour that adroitly rewards audience patience.
The movie is, I think, a meditation on feminism and the angry alpha males who too often end up making life miserable for the families they establish.
Angela Bettis, wonderful as a central character in both “May” and “Sick Girl,” portrays in “The Woman” the lawyer’s wife. She’s a real highlight of the new film’s final reels.
McKee films come along only so often so I’m gratified to point out, as this controversial project rolls out in limited release today, it is pulling a 78% positive rating over at Rotten Tomatoes.
If it’s playing in your area, you are encouraged to give it a gander.