By Jack Dignan
Based on the book of the same title by J. G. Ballard, High-Rise is the trippy and mind bending story of Laing (Tom Hiddleston), who moves into a high rise apartment block run by Royal (Jeremy Irons). The apartment block, over the course of a couple of months, slowly begins to descend into anarchy, the residents uncontrollable and the law forgotten about entirely. There's not a lot to High-Rise in terms of plot, but the simplicity makes for a strange, strange movie.
Tom Hiddleston leads us on this tale, and it may just be one of the best performances he's given to date. It's confident, his insanity well hidden and restraint. Sienna Miller plays a rather interesting character in this film, and while I do think she was slightly underdeveloped, I was thoroughly entertained by her screen time. A big surprise was Luke Evans, who I didn't even realise was going to be in this film. While his character is unlikeable, his performance is brilliant, and the same can be said for Jeremy Irons, who is the man behind the madness, slowly losing control of the building he holds so dearly. Or, perhaps, this is exactly what he wanted to happen. For a majority of the movie, it remains unclear, but I can definitely say I was satisfied with this film's outcome, even if it did skim through time a little too fast.
Ben Wheatley, director of Kill List and Sightseers, once again proves himself to be an extremely confident director, taking on a film as warped and disturbing as this one and creating brilliance. It's an interesting film that feels very Kubrick at times, and as the film continues, we descend further into the madness that is this movie. Undoubtably, the chaos may turn a lot of viewers off. The content may prove too much, and its occasional nonsensicalness will make it a difficult viewing for people who want their films to be linear and easy to understand. But for the rest, there's a lot of beauty to be found amongst the anarchy, and for the people, like myself, who can find something to enjoy from this movie, it's almost guaranteed you're going to love it.