Neil Jordan (director)
18 April 2019 (released)
16 April 2019
It’s hard to believe that actors as long in the tooth Stephen Rea and Isabelle Huppert didn’t have a wry smile when they read the script by Neil Jordan and Ray Wright for Greta and then think - we are going to have some fun with this. It’s understandable that they probably didn’t consider whether the audience was going to as well.
Frances (Chloë Grace Moretz) after a hard day’s work in the restaurant where she works as a waitress, finds an elegant green handbag on the subway and takes it home. Rummaging through she finds ID, an address and money. She decides to return it chided by her house mate Erica (Maika Monroe) that New York will eat her with that attitude.
She finds Greta (Isabelle Huppert) a widow who has a French accent (but could be Hungarian), who is clearly lonely, as her daughter is studying in France. As Frances has recently lost her mother she has some sympathy and they strike up a friendship. For a time, they are almost inseparable much to Erica’s annoyance who finds it all a very weird.
Nevertheless, Frances is having a good time until she makes a discovery that changes everything and decides to call time on the friendship.
However Greta isn’t about to let her go that easily plaguing Frances with endless texts and messages, standing outside staring at her and causing such a scene at the restaurant where Frances works that she has to be manacled. But it’s not just Frances as Greta begins to stalk Erica sending photos taunting her that she’s on Erica’s tail.
Needless to say, things escalate to a quite ridiculous levels with some gory grand guignol of the first order, dream sequences and a curve ball. Plus the highlight a now completely potty Huppert dancing about in her stockinged feet!
The whole thing from the very start has an air of incredulity and it is total tosh of the highest order with Rae and Huppert figuratively nodding and winking their way through their scene. But this then puts some pressure on Moretz, and to a lesser extent Monroe, to come up with the goods and to their credit they both take it in their strides with solid performances.
This isn’t a film to be taken seriously on any level and in some respects that’s fine there’s nothing wrong with just pure entertainment on a base level. But while Jordan’s direction lifts it out of its B movie idea origins it’s actually not that enjoyable to watch as it slides about in clichés and silly character decisions.