Breathtaking and Heartbreaking


Madison Davis, Staff Writer- The Mustang Messenger

This movie starts out with our main character, Alice, underwater, watching the murky light and floating seaweed above her. She is not swimming back up for air, at least not yet. In reality, she is meeting up with her friends at a restaurant. These flashes of her in the water, then back to real life, is showing how she is feeling inside. The water scene is a visual metaphor for the character’s state of mind. Although her friends are great to her, she fakes a smile on her face, but behind it, Alice is holding onto an abusive partner, Simon. This sad truth is revealed when we see guilt trips, stressful conversations with her partner, behavior like pulling out her hair, and panic attacks. Her friends quickly see all the red flags, but Alice looks past these warnings as if they’re her partner’s love language. Simon is so controlling and Alice is too scared to tell him that she is going on a birthday trip with her friends. During this her friends Sophie and Tess stage an intervention for their friend sinking away from them, they tell her to swim up and get out. They come together to help Alice save herself. Alice, Darling is a drama as well as a psychological thriller about a bad romance. The signs are obvious to the audience and her friends but Alice she has dug herself into a defensive position, justifying Simon’s controlling demands of her body, attention, and time, Alice ends up isolating herself from the people who truly care about her. There is tension in every confrontational interaction between Alice and Simon, there are often cruel rounds of verbal and emotional abuse. Alice’s world looks a little less bright than the one her friends live in. The author adds more to the already tense drama with a subplot about a missing young woman, that Alice gets fixated on and the mystery becomes an excuse for Simon to escalate his control over her. When Simon fears she is in danger he comes to find her on her trip and tries to manipulate her to leave. I think this movie could be very relatable for anyone going through a toxic relationship, holding onto someone harmful, and anyone who has lost how they are in another person. It can also show people that even if you are in a delusion of love, if you look you can see the real thing is actually all around you, from your friends and family. In this movie her friends played a big role in trying to rescue the person they knew before, saving Alice. Alice, Darling may be more of a more sensitive and more upsetting film but it portrays those emotions beautifully and it’s worth watching till the end to finally get that satisfaction and relief of knowing she made it out. Seeing how she can finally take that first breath of fresh air after holding it underwater for so long.