The Machinist

The Machinist

Brad Anderson (2003)

97min
15 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
The most astonishing thing about this bleak, underplayed psychological thriller is Christian Bale's incredible physical transformation. No longer the bulked-up protagonist from American Psycho, Bale has deliberately withered to the point where his appearance is shockingly reminiscent of undernourished PoWs. Reportedly losing over 60 pounds - a third of his body weight - to get into the role, Bale plays factory worker Trevor Reznik, whose emaciated condition and chronic insomnia may be linked to a mysterious stranger and a secret from his past. Director Brad Anderson, who was behind the lens for the effectively creepy Session 9, here cultivates a similarly studied atmosphere but his determination to move everything at a pace that would disgrace a particularly slothful snail finally undermines some of the tension. Still the Theremin-heavy score, which brings to mind such cult classics as The Day the Earth Stood Still and Carnival of Souls, is appropriately weird.

Summary

A factory worker suffering from chronic insomnia has not slept properly in more than a year. When his extreme fatigue results in a tragic accident, his colleagues turn on him and he sinks into a state of intense paranoia, becoming obsessed with a man nobody else believes exists. Psychological thriller, starring Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Michael Ironside.

Cast & Crew

Trevor Reznik Christian Bale
Stevie Jennifer Jason Leigh
Miller Michael Ironside
Marie Aitana Sanchez-Gijon
Ivan John Sharian
Mrs Shrike Anna Massey
Jackson Larry Gillard Jr
Jones Reg E Cathey
Director Brad Anderson
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: TartanGuidance: Violence, swearing and nudity.Available on: DVD and Blu-ray
Drama