Shirley

Shirley

Shirley

Elisabeth Moss is famed horror writer Shirley Jackson, author of The Haunting of Hill House, in this offbeat biopic from the director of Madeline's Madeline. The fictionalised story follows Shirley and her husband (Michael Stuhlbarg) as they take in a naïve newlywed couple, only to mess with them as inspiration for her next book.

2020Rating: M, Mature themes, sex scenes, nudity and coarse language107 minsUSA
DramaThrillerTrue Story & Biography

Streaming (4 Providers)

Shirley / Reviews

Flicks

Flicks, Amanda Jane Robinson

Elisabeth Moss is magnificent as Jackson’s unkempt woman on the verge and Odessa Young splendid as Rosemary Nemser, Jackson’s radiant muse. Both characters are approaching transformation yet stymied by their mediocre husbands; Michael Stuhlbarg note-perfect as sleazy academic Stanley Hyman and Logan Lerman faultless as Rosemary’s spineless husband Fred. The film is strongest when playing out ever-changing power shifts between these four characters, a dynamic mastered by director Josephine Decker in her 2018 debut feature, Madeline’s Madeline.

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Stuff

Stuff

If you’re a fan of awkward dinner conversations, surreal, vivid dreams, philosophical debates and spiky personalities, then you’ll think Shirley is, as Stanley describes originality, “a brilliant alchemy of critical thought and creativity”.

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The Guardian

The Guardian

For those willing to sink into the depths with Shirley, it’s a delicious journey down.

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Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair

The film is not an easy sit, but hopefully at least some awards-voters will endure Shirley’s crucible and emerge with a full appreciation for what Moss is doing. It’s breakneck, exciting stuff, the kind one so ardently hopes to see at a festival like this.

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IndieWire

IndieWire

Adapted from the Susan Scarf Merrell novel of the same name, Decker’s characteristically sawtoothed and delirious new film is set in the same latent space between fact and fantasy — a story and its telling — where she located all of her previous work.

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Entertainment Weekly

Entertainment Weekly

This, by Decker’s singular standards, is an accessible movie. And while hardly a broad commercial play, emerging out of Sundance with good buzz, it’s yet another magnificent starring vehicle for Elisabeth Moss, who continues to balance her Emmy-winning Handmaid’s Tale work with ambitious, involving indies.

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Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

Long a staple of film and television drama, this sort of inebriated, one-location yak-fest is hardly the fashion these days, but there’s much for audiences of a certain ilk to relish here amid the refined noxiousness of manipulative goings-on among the educated class.

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