Film Review – The Nest (2020)

Title – The Nest (2020)

Director – Sean Durkin (Martha Marcy May Marlene)

Cast – Jude Law, Carrie Coon, Oona Roche, Charlie Shotwell

Plot – Driven businessman Rory O’Hara (Law) moves his family including wife Allison (Coon) from America back to his home country of England where their lives begin to unravel around financial hardship and isolated life in a country manner.

“Things have dried up for me here”

Review by Eddie on 11/02/2021

Director Sean Durkin’s first feature film since his critically lauded debut Martha Marcy May Marlene way back in 2011, The Nest marks the return of a very talented director in what acts as a feature that is sumptuously made and performed but one that is hard to warm too as Surkin’s laugh-free drama embeds us into a crumbling marriage between Jude Law’s Rory and Carrie Coon’s Allison.

It’s a marital/family drama that feels fairly familiar, Rory is a driven businessman who believes he is some type of entrepreneur and seemingly gets by on talk alone while Allison is a horse loving mum and wife that begins to unravel at the seams as Rory’s miscalculated schemes and movements begin to affect their livelihoods and future together.

Taking a less is more approach that never once threatens to head into showy territory, either in a directional sense or performance sense, Durkin is in no rush to explore the O’Hara’s predicaments as Rory transports his family back to his home country of England in pursuit of fortune and renown, leaving a seemingly cushy life in America in the process.

Some viewers may find themselves mentally switching off as Durkin’s ponderous and slow-moving approach takes hold and while the craft on show is beautiful to behold it wouldn’t have hurt the film for things to take a more immediate and determined approach, especially as the tale of the O’Hara’s never truly surprises us, even if at times a feeling like something unpredictable is awaiting us at every corner.

One thing that is a driving factor for the films mid-tier success as a dramatic piece is the performances of its two leads.

Mixing his well know charisma with a sinister underbelly, Law is typically strong as Rory while the often undervalued Carrie Coon delivers an awards caliber performance as the long-suffering Allison.

It’s the type of resoundingly successful turn that hearkens back to Coon’s breakout role in the HBO series The Leftovers or her well regarded turns in many a Broadway offering and as Rory and Allison’s fragile world begins to close in around them, Coon’s turn is mesmerizing as we witness an everyday women trying to keep her head above water against overwhelming odds.

Final Say – 

A well shot and performed drama that is more generic and slow than it needed to be, The Nest is a fine showcase for its two leads and the ability of director Sean Durkin, who will hopefully return to the big screen more readily than his last hiatus.

3 golden goals out of 5

4 responses to “Film Review – The Nest (2020)

  1. This was one of the movies that was playing when my local Landmark theater opened up again back in September. I like both Law and Coon, but I think it’s slow and methodical approach would have been a turn off for me.

    Might give this one a watch some time down the road.

    • It’s certainly a watch at home movie this one. I know of some people that really loved it but I found it wasn’t overly original and the main drawing card was the two central performances.

      • It’s tough sometimes with not much content coming into cinemas, its the biggest problem down here in Aus, there just really isn’t anything coming out even though everyone is keen to get in and support the cinemas.

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