Love Lies Bleeding – The DVDfever Cinema Review – Kristen Stewart

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Love Lies Bleeding is a film I’ve been waiting for, for a long time, ever since I first saw the trailer in January, so I really hoped it didn’t disappoint.

Kristen Stewart takes the lead as gym manager, Lou, although we know she has to get down to the nitty gritty of the job, as we first see her with her hand down the toilet to unclog it, even though it’d be a lot easier to simply use a plunger – even with the handle end first, so it doesn’t get all mucked up in the brush section, and you don’t get it all over your hands – which is more important.

Before long, she chances upon well-built Jackie (Katy O’BrianAnt-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania), who’s on her way to a bodybuilding competition, so it’s a meeting of both minds and bodies with Lou having easy access to anabolic steroids, given where she works and the number of customers using them. However, when she claims to use them on her tiny muscles, it does just look like she’s worked out a bit, instead.

Meanwhile, Jackie’s in this career for the long haul, but it still attracted to using them, initially just occasionally, before she gets hooked. Jackie’s also sees that Lou’s mentally sinking in her backwater town, so is drawn to wanting to take her out of there.

Also, bringing them together, is Lou’s estranged father, Lou Sr., with Ed Harris (Top Gun Maverick) still putting in an amazing turn at 73, and his opening gambit – almost halfway through the trailer below – cracked me up every time I saw it, prior to release. Jackie gets a job waitressing at his gun club, but can she bring them together?

Well, no spoilers, but Ms Stewart has mostly made a living out of gritty thriller indie movies, which don’t exactly follow convention, so I wasn’t expecting a wholly positive resolution. Was I right?

Meanwhile, Lou’s protective of her sister, Beth (Jena MaloneRebel Moon Part One: A Child Of Fire), who has an abusive husband, JJ (Dave Franco), while also dealing with ditzy Daisy (Anna BaryshnikovWiener-Dog), a young woman who’s forever hovering around, hoping she can woo her, not realising the emotional hold Jackie has over Lou.

So, there’s a lot going on in this, during the just-right running time of 104 minutes, too, but while it blindsided me at times, it’s absolutely bloody brilliant and I’m looking forward to watching it again. However, it is a bit fanciful a couple of times which can let it down a bit, even though it’s sending itself up in those moments. Maybe a second viewing would help me decide on those scenes.

That said, it’s just a shame that in its second week, it’s gone down from four screenings a day to just one, but then it wasn’t busy because too many idiots were conned into watching The Fall Guy, and even then, that one wasn’t exactly busy for an early evening screening on a bank holiday Monday.

As an aside, I was trying to figure out when this was set – as it felt very ’80s, given references to Die Hard just having been released in cinemas. Later, the bodybuilding competition banner is shown, confirming it’s 1988. Bear in mind, that Bruce Willis’ film was released in the US in July 1988, but back then, it took months for a lot of films to reach the UK, and we didn’t get this Christmas movie until February 1989!

But back to our lead, and she’s knocked it out of the park yet again. Give me a choice between Pamela Anderson in her hey-day, and Kristen Stewart looking like she’s in need of a good wash, and I’ll take K-Stew every time 😀

Never mind that awful 2019 Charlie’s Angels reboot, but go and check out both Equals and Personal Shopper.

Love Lies Bleeding is in cinemas now, and is available to pre-order on Blu-ray and DVD, ahead of its release date TBA.

Love Lies Bleeding – Official Trailer – A24

Detailed specs:

Running time: 104 minutes
Release date: May 2nd 2024
Studio: A24 / Film 4
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
Cinema: Odeon Trafford Centre
Rating: 9/10

Director: Rose Glass
Producers: Andrea Cornwell, Oliver Kassman
Screenplay: Rose Glass, Weronika Tofilska
Music: Clint Mansell

Lou: Kristen Stewart
Jackie: Katy O’Brian
Lou Sr.: Ed Harris
Beth: Jena Malone
Daisy: Anna Baryshnikov
JJ: Dave Franco
Billy: Eldon Jones
Gym Woman: Catherine Haun
O’Riley: Orion Carrington
Dave: Matthew Blood-Smyth
Chester: Keith Jardine
Mikey: Jerry G Angelo
Nate: Tait Fletcher