Under the Skin

Under the Skin

Jonathan Glazer (2013)

15 Certificate


Our Score
Director Jonathan Glazer's third feature in 14 years (after heist thriller Sexy Beast and New York psychodrama Birth) is closer in abstract style to his surreal work in TV commercials - the Guinness surfer; the tenement-block paint symphony for Sony. Ostensibly the darkly esoteric tale of a mysterious, English-accented femme fatale (Scarlett Johansson) who preys on unsuspecting local men in Scotland, it opens with a jaw-dropping cosmic sequence (echoing Stanley Kubrick's 2001) and sets an otherworldly tone sharply at odds with the hidden-camera footage of grey, rainy Glasgow and its unwitting inhabitants. Johansson is truly mesmerising as the rouge-lipped siren who lures her suitors to a nondescript van to meet a horrific fate worse than death. Extracted from rather than based on Michel Faber's more linear and satirical novel, Under the Skin delivers startlingly original imagery amid the Scottish landscapes and finds queasy horror everywhere thanks to Mica Levi's pervasive electronic score. Like Johansson's unearthly visitor, the film loses its way occasionally, but it's an experience you'll not forget in a hurry.


An alien takes on the form of a dead woman and roams the streets of Glasgow. She seduces men only to mysteriously consume them, but as she observes the human race, her detachment begins to slip and she develops empathy with the people she encounters. Sci-fi drama based on Michel Faber's novel, starring Scarlett Johansson.

Cast & Crew

The Female Scarlett Johansson
The Bad Man Jeremy McWilliams
Andrew Paul Brannigan
The Deformed Man Adam Pearson
Director Jonathan Glazer

Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Studio CanalGuidance: Violence, sex scenes, nudity.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 14 Mar 2014