Martha Marcy May Marlene gives pause for thought

Knowing D blogging favourite Reasons to go North takes to the Aisle Seat with her review of Martha Marcy May Marlene and clearly enjoyed a film which left her with a few questions of her own. Enjoy! And we’re looking forward to you comments and thoughts of course!


My only reason for viewing this psychological thriller was an acquaintance of mine told me he had invested in this ‘artsy film’ which had been nominated at the Sundance awards.

Disturbing would be an understatement.  I watched the film at the Brewery Kendal, with no more than ten others on a Saturday evening.  It deserved a much greater audience, but I admit it would not be to everyone’s taste.  Cult followings are a difficult and uncomfortable subject.  This was directed with insight and sympathy for those who find themselves playing the vulnerable part in any dysfunctional relationship.  Don’t expect a full explanation of how Martha became subjugated, though ‘hints’ of the reasons for her vulnerability are given, and don’t expect a ‘tidy’ ending.  That you will have to decide for yourself.

But I did find total empathy with Martha Marcy May Marlene, I will leave you to discover where and how the four names apply.  The subtle and insidious control by a manipulative cult leader, of young and vulnerable minds, left me wondering why they did not leave, while simultaneously realising their overwhelming desire to ‘please’ this man whom they feared and yet adored.

Expect to sit on the edge of your seat silently hoping that Martha manages to move away and find some peace in her future life.


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