Shot on the iPhone 7, Steven Soderbergh's latest film experiment is an engrossing psychological thriller centered on a live-wire performance from The Crown's Claire Foy
Steven Soderbergh’s experimentation is making headlines again, this time because his new psychological thriller, Unsane, has been shot on the iPhone 7. Embracing the camera’s deep focus depth of field and unnaturally looming foreground, it’s full of unnervingly crisp and off-kilter images, and tells the story of a corporate drone (played by Claire Foy) who finds herself involuntarily confined to a mental institution that’s running an insurance scam. Haunted by visions of her stalker, the screws turn and through a few unfortunate mood swings and run-ins, she finds herself digging deeper into a nightmare.
Part criticism of the American incarceration-for-profit machine, part low-rent quickie, and part deeply unsettling prowler horror, Unsane is sometimes plodding for a movie that has so much going on, but it also has plenty of shocks and as a whole is deeply engrossing. Claire Foy’s live-wire, agitated, fiercely intelligent performance is a terrific shift from her prestige work on British television, and Soderbergh’s filmmaking remains some of the most satisfyingly unpredictable in contemporary Hollywood cinema.