The weekend has come to a close, and with a new week comes a new discussion. This time around we're going to dive into Brad Anderson's The Machinist, a taut little thriller from 2004 that represents something new for the Movie Club. Unlike most of Anderson's films, I found myself horribly upset with the way The Machinist carried out its big twist. It was eerily reminiscent of Haute Tension, though Aja's horrible wreck of a film gave didn't wait until the end to sucker punch us. We got that a little over halfway through the film, leaving us with another half hour to wonder what the Hell Aja was smoking when he wrote it. The Machinist, thankfully, manages to keep us entertained until this point. Let's explore all of this.
Before we delve into the film's flaws, let's look at its positive attributes. Despite my misgivings, the film still managed to be an incredibly tense affair. I didn't expect anything less, as this is Anderson's modus operandi: the utter frailty of the human condition. The overall tone of the film is reminiscent of Session 9, employing a stark minimalism in terms of visuals, focusing heavily on muted colors. The sound design was impeccable, instilling in the viewer an incredible sense of dread with sharp, tense cellos and a myriad of other spooky sounds.