High Rise is a British Dystopian film directed by Ben Wheatley. The plot follows the goings on in a high-rise tower block that has become dived along class lines. We see Laing (Tom Hiddleston), try to adjust to life here and he becomes wrapped up in the class conflict.
So yes, the political and social commentary are very on the nose, there is no subtly here. Though usually I find this to be a sign of poor writing I go the other way here, as I believe it was Wheatly’s intent all along to be very blunt and in the audiences face with the film’s themes and messages. Furthermore, I find the points drawn therein to be well thought out and have surprising depth.
I enjoyed the absurdist nature, that is very present in the beginning, that quickly turns to a more threatening and violent edge. I find this film, much like a lot of Wheatley’s other work, straddles the black comedy line so well. At first these ideas might seem funny, but you quickly become aware of the bite behind them.
I think Hiddleston does well in the lead, he is a very serviceable stand in for the audience. That said he is blown out of the water by Luke Evans. Evan’s Wilder goes through an entire mental break over the course of the film and becomes a man possessed by the end in what can only be called a tour de force performance.
Elizabeth Moss is also in this film and she pulls off a pretty convincing accent, so props there to.
The in your face messages
The black comedy/ dystopian mixture
It might be too absurdist at times, it can be confusing
Reviewed by Luke