Thoroughbreds Movie Poster

This was a film that I was anxious to see in theaters, but it never came around this area of the country.  I had heard a lot of positives about it, so I started watching for it on the different streaming services.  Finally, it arrived on Amazon Prime so I rented it and gave it a watch.

Lily (Anya Taylor-Joy) and Amanda (Olivia Cooke) were childhood friends who had grown apart.  However, they reconnected later in life and bonded over their individual lack of emotions and the troublesome nature of Lily’s nasty step-father Mark (Paul Sparks).  Amanda floats the idea of getting rid of Mark in a permanent manner, and the girls try to convince low level crook Tim (Anton Yelchin) to help them do it.

The most interesting part of this film is the performance of Olivia Cooke and how she portrayed this sociopath, Amanda,  Amanda tells Lily that she does not feel joy or sadness, that those emotions are something foreign to her.  Working her way through life without these basic human emotions is a fascinating character trait that you would think would make someone a rotten human being and yet you can see how human Amanda is despite the way that she acts.  It is clear that she cares about Lily, but in a way that is not the way we are used to.

Lily is actually more rotten of a person as she hides her own feelings and actions from her family and even from Olivia.  She has many of the same tendencies of Amanda, but she does it for more selfish reasons.  Everything seems to be about her.

It was both great and sad seeing Anton Yelchin on the screen again.  This was, I believe, his final performance before his tragic accidental death.  The young actor had a bright future ahead of him and, to prove that, he was great in this role as Tim, a small time thug who was not sure of what to make of these two girls.

This movie is dark and violent, and shines a light on some characters who are anything but likeable.  Honestly, the sociopath Amanda might be the character most worth rooting for in this film.  The way the girls react with one another and the rest of the characters is fascinating and shows how a psychological character drama can be done well.  This one may not be for everyone, but if you like a dark tale of flawed characters who may not always make the best choices, Thoroughbreds is one you may want to check out.

3.6 stars

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