‘Nightcrawler’ brings disturbing characters to life


Alon Amir

Photo courtesy of New Age Films

Filming blood-ridden scenes, manipulating dead bodies, even setting up deaths.

Whatever it takes to get the money shot.

‘Nightcrawler’ pits viewers in the dark streets of Los Angeles as it follows Luis Bloom, a thief turned reporter played by Jake Gyllenhaal, as he attempts to hustle money anyway possible.

Whether pawning stolen property, or auctioning off news footage of a bloody and disturbing crime scene, Bloom only has one concern.

Making money.

The film takes audience to several recognizable locations, including the boardwalk of Venice, the 105 Freeway overlooking the Raytheon building in El Segundo, and the famous Capital Records building in Los Angeles.

After an encounter with a freelance cameraman, Bloom gets inspired to pick up his own camera and start shooting on his own.

As the film progresses, it seems as if Bloom is changing from being a thief to a rising star cameraman.

Bloom quickly learns that the more graphic a film, the more money a station will pay for it.

This prompts him to capture footage so disturbing, that even the news station he works for is repulsed, they’ll still pay for it.

With each passing scene, it starts to become more evident that Bloom’s regard for people, whether dead or alive, is nonexistent.

The once admirable underdog, is soon perceived as a heartless cutthroat who’s main objective to make money has never changed.

Most scenes take place in small-enclosed areas such as Bloom’s apartment or his car, and the sounds mostly heard come from Bloom’s television and police scanner.

The small cast in each scene helps establish a quiet and intimate atmosphere allowing for a dramatic contrast in noise.

Many current films are riddled explosions and gunshots like ‘Transformers’ or the “Marvel” films, but they are barely used in “Nightcrawler”.

When there is a car chase or gunshot, the scene becomes dramatically more intense.

The intimacy also allows the audience to notice the growing changes in each character and their development as the film plays on.

Despite this, audiences will be unable to really describe Bloom or the other characters as there is no backstory to who they are how he ended up where they’re at.

Even Bloom’s partner, Rick, who he hires later in the film, just shows up to interview with no clarification on how he found Bloom.

During his interview for the job, the only thing Rick says about himself is that he needs a job, and has worked in landscaping.

With a main cast of about three characters, audiences learn almost nothing about them.

Overall, ‘Nightcrawler’ is definitely an interesting thriller that will keep audiences engaged with it’s ominous storyline.

Bloom becomes more repulsive with every scene, as he keeps the viewer wondering what other lines he is willing to cross to get what he wants, even if it’s inhumane.

In Bloom’s head, it’s simply business.