Title – Windfall (2022)
Director – Charlie McDowell (The One I Love)
Cast – Jason Segel, Lily Collins, Jesse Plemons
Plot – A nameless nobody (Segel) breaks into a tech billionaire’s (Plemons) holiday home that he is visiting with his wife (Collins) as the trio set about on a dangerous cat and mouse as they wait on money to arrive that will end the situation amicably.
“It’s going to be a long night”
Review by Eddie on 09/05/2022
Filled with an abundance of Hitchcockian vibes and aesthetics, from something as simple as its opening credits font through to Danny Bensi and Saunder Jurriaans atmospheric if overly used score, Netflix thriller Windfall is a film that promises much and certainly has a polished exterior but sadly when one scratches the surface, what’s left is a film that feels half-baked at best and one that deserved more refinement that may have helped it find a purpose outside of being a very minor distraction.
A passion project for its star and co-creator Jason Segel, here teaming up with Se7en writer Andrew Kevin Walker and indie director Charlie McDowell (with whom he previously collaborated on The Discovery with), Windfall is a great chance for its lead trio to showcases their undeniable acting chops and there’s always joy to be had from watching such talented actors work alongside one another in dialogue rich and tension riddled affairs but even at a mere 90 minutes in length Windfall’s story isn’t enough to sustain momentum and at conclusion McDowell’s film fails to provide a good enough reason to have sat through it in its entirety.
Providing very little in the way of context for any of its nameless characters, with Segel’s intruder entering into a game of wits with Jesse Plemon’s well off tech CEO and Lily Collins as his wife when he runs into them on vacation while his robbing their house, Windfall’s inability or non-interest to give us much reason to care for anyone’s fate or reasoning behind any of the decisions these characters makes halts much of its work in its tracks while its sombre and unenthusiastic nature gives off a grim feeling throughout without their ever being an ice breaker outside of a rather bizarre and almost laughable accident involving an everyday household component.
All the slow movements the film makes and coldness towards its characters that appear in virtually every scene of the production could’ve felt much more worthwhile had Windfall managed to stick its landing that it so carefully appears to be aiming for but while there’s a sense at times we are in for a big thrilling showdown that culminates all the time we’ve endured throughout McDowell’s methodical and well-shot feature, come the films final stretches it’s hard not to feel like we much like Plemons and Collins couple are being ripped off also.
It’s a shame Windfall can’t provide us with something too elevate it from another middling Netflix film but with a lack of charm, smarts and energy its unlikely many will be glad they partook in this supposedly thrilling hostage flick that never properly gets out of first gear.
Final Say –
The talent of its cast is undeniable and they do their best working off one another but Windfall is a boorishly slow thriller that forgets the thrills to its own detriment, making this a well-filmed Netflix original that fails to provide the results one would’ve hoped for.
2 pairs of Yeezy’s out of 5