Cracks DVD Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Feature 6.0
Video 8.0
Audio 7.0
Special Features   0.0
Total 5.5
Distributor: Roadshow
Running Time: 100 Minutes
Classification:
 M15+
Reviewer: Simon Black

5.5


Cracks

In a remote and foreboding female boarding school, the most elite clique of girls are the members of the school’s illustrious diving team.   

So elite are they, in fact, that we barely catch a glimpse of the other students throughout the film’s entire runtime, and a good 95% of the film’s dialogue is spoken by either the members of this group or their worldly, neurotic and closet Sapphic diving teacher Miss G (Eva Green, Casino Royale).  While this serves to heighten the atmosphere of this already tense film and emphasises the cloistered nature of in-group dynamics it does start to induce a sense of claustrophobia such that by the end of the movie the viewer may well be left gasping for air. 

Much like its protagonist, a beautiful asthmatic Spanish heiress Fiamma (Maria Valverde) who is sent to experience the wonders of the 1930s British boarding school system following a romantic scandal in her homeland.  Yes, she’s asthmatic, yes it is obvious from the get-go that this will be significant and yes you can probably guess how the film will end.  At any rate Fiamma is not entirely popular with the diving group, let by prissy bitch Di (the astonishingly unappealing Juno Temple, Year One), who mercilessly bully her one minute then act besotted the next.  Miss G displays no such confusing inconsistency, acting at first beguiled, then enchanted, then enraptured, then crazy.  Then the film builds towards a highly melodramatic conclusion; add a bit more crazy, stir, add a teensy bit more contradictory behaviour, a final parting shot of Di, who by this point will either inspire loathing or apathy but not the intended sympathy from the viewer, then fade to black. 

The problem with Cracks, the debut feature from director Jordan ‘daughter of Ridley’ Scott, is that its characters never seem to know what the hell they’re doing or why they’re doing it.  This becomes confusing after a while, then merely irritating, and as the inconsistencies pile up any chance the film had of culminating in a meaningful way largely dissipates.  Eva Green is excellent as the conflicted teacher inhabiting a fantasy world, and Valverde also puts in an exquisitely understated and believable performance.  The rest of the cast are however so unlikable as to arouse disgust or so underdeveloped that they may as well have been mannequins.  Cracks had plenty of potential and could well have been mesmerising from start to finish, but the affected plum-in-mouth performance of Temple and sizable incoherencies of plot mean this one falls through the gaps in its own logic.  Enjoyable and promising, but ultimately a disappointment. 

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 anamorphically enhanced widescreen

Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 English surround, DD English 2.0

Subtitles: English descriptive

Descriptive Audio: Yes

Bonus Features: None






 
 



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