“Luckiest Girl Alive” has loads happening, in a manner that undermines the film’s translation from ebook to display. Mila Kunis produces and stars on this #MeToo-tinged story, which awkwardly incorporates a mass college taking pictures in addition to gender and sophistication politics into what turns into an ungainly mixture of hot-button points in a single dramatic package deal.
Kunis performs Ani FaNelli, a have-it-all journal journalist near touchdown her dream job on the New York Occasions and marrying her rich boyfriend Luke (Finn Wittrock), though there’s rigidity over whether or not her skilled aspirations should take a again seat to his higher-paying profession.
A documentarian, nevertheless, is once more asking thorny questions in regards to the college taking pictures that occurred when Ani was attending the celebrated Brentley College, bringing reminiscences flooding again in regards to the sexual assault she skilled there, on the time receiving little help from her social-climbing mom (Connie Britton, diminished to a caricature).
Chiara Aurelia portrays the younger Ani, whose ordeal is graphically proven through the regular stream of flashbacks that assail her older self. These unflinching sequences recall “13 Reasons Why,” one other Netflix manufacturing constructed round a high-school rape and pressures on a teen woman to stay silent.
Right here, the dilemma about what to say resurfaces for the grownup Ani, particularly with one in every of her attackers having achieved a measure of fame, and concern that talking out will by some means derail the yellow-brick highway to high-society life that looms forward of her. Because the handsomely clueless Luke places it, why deal with “this factor that occurred to you so way back.”
As constructed, sadly, in an adaptation of the ebook written by its creator, Jessica Knoll, and directed by Mike Barker, “Luckiest Lady Alive” feels as if it’s juggling too many plates – becoming a member of the story in progress and laboring to attach the mass taking pictures to Ani’s story in a manner that muddles the thriller. The shortage of perception in regards to the true-crime style that helps drive the narrative – that’s, the documentary throughout the film – additionally represents a missed alternative.
Whereas Kunis and Aurelia convey Ani’s anguish, there’s a stick-figure high quality to the supporting gamers, a roster that features Jennifer Beals as her hard-charging editor, except a caring trainer (Scoot McNairy) who comes again into Ani’s life.
On its face, the mix of a high-profile lead, bestselling ebook and provocative subject material sounds just like the form of system that yields dividends for Netflix, and the film nonetheless may. However “Luckiest Lady Alive” falls in need of its promise, a reminder that, nevertheless ironic the title is meant to be, fortune tends to favor the daring.
“Luckiest Lady Alive” premieres October 7 on Netflix.