In the last year, Scarlett Johansson has voiced a sentient operating system in Spike Jonze's 'Her' and played an alien striving to understand humanity in Jonathan Glazer's jarring 'Under the Skin.' This week, she tackles a different kind of sci-fi with 'Lucy,' a film that carries some of the same thematic DNA as her previous roles, though it isn't quite as intellectual -- nor is it as brainy as its titular character. But thanks to Johansson, the film prevails, giving us a wild and delightfully weird entry in the Scarlett Johansson Sci-Fi Collection.
Under the Skin
Director Jonathan Glazer's 'Under the Skin' stars Scarlett Johansson as an apathetic alien named Laura, who uses her earthly female body to seduce men and lead them to their death. The film is an oft abstract and unnerving experience (especially in the wonderfully bizarre first hour), and when Laura makes a surprising decision, 'Under the Skin' shifts from examining ideas of subjective and intangible attraction to the tragedy of Johansson's femme fatale trying to claim her sexuality -- and her body -- as her own.
Scarlett Johansson's performance in 'Under the Skin' is perhaps best known for one where she is naked frequently. And, while that might be all you really need to know about 'Under the Skin,' there is also this interesting tidbit. For the film, where Scarlett plays a beautiful-but-evil man-killer, the actress secretly went out, seduced regular guys walking down the street and lured them into a van.
From the center of a black screen a white dot forms into a sphere. Then, blue discs and then, finally, what looks like tar draining away from pure white. Mixed in with eerie music and some incoherent babble from a female voice. Even though I've seen all of 'Under the Skin' I still only have a vague, gut reaction idea of what these opening moments are meant to represent. And...I think that's exactly the idea?
'Under the Skin' premiered at the Telluride film festival this week in Colorado, and while it's garnered some divisive reviews, we've got our first look at this sexy and very creepy new sci-fi thriller from Jonathan Glazer, director of 'Sexy Beast' and 'Birth.' Starring Scarlett Johansson, the film promises to deliver some very strange and seductive visuals -- if this first teaser is any indication.