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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

“The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window” Review – Netflix Series Hilariously Trolls Itself

Netflix‘s release of The Woman in the Window last year continued a trend of psychological thrillers centered on unreliable, unhinged protagonists trying to sleuth their way through murder mysteries despite obstacles like agoraphobia. It was panned by critics and audiences alike, most torn on whether the movie’s silliness and penchant for over-the-top melodrama was an asset or a flaw. Netflix trolls itself with its latest. “The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window” is far more digestible than its mouthful of a title, and the absurd satire builds to a hilarious punchline.

Anna (Kristen Bell) sits in front of a window every day, drinking bottles of wine and downing prescribed pills while watching life move on around her. She’s unable to cope with a tragic loss that broke her family. Hope for normalcy comes when a handsome new neighbor, Neil (Tom Riley), moves in across the street with his precocious daughter Emma (Samsara Yett). The trio hits it off swimmingly until Anna witnesses a gruesome murder. Or did she?

The entire cast plays the increasingly wacky story completely straight, opting for high camp over slapstick parody. Series creators Rachel RamrasHugh Davidson and Larry Dorf, and director Michael Lehman strike a particular comedic tone that will delight or confuse, much in the same way that James Wan’s Malignant polarized last year. No one is more committed to the exaggerating peculiarities of this world more than Bell, whose Anna is an unreliable narrator to the extreme. She pours entire bottles of wine into her glass at a time, and crossing the street in the rain causes her to collapse. Never mind Anna’s endless supply of casserole dishes, thanks to every single one of her chicken casseroles meeting a shattering end.

It’s the characters and the eccentricities that sustain curiosity and investment; the cookie-cutter murder mystery unraveling isn’t nearly as entertaining or as crucial as Anna’s unraveling as she continues to sabotage every social encounter or relationship in her orbit. The mystery even takes a while to warm up, with the series instead spending time developing the quirky characters and finding its satirical groove.

Once the pieces click in place, the series settles in as it builds toward an insanely hilarious punchline that makes the initial setup worth the wait. It’s a delightfully unhinged and satisfying payoff that makes it clear the entire series is one clever joke meticulously plotted for maximum impact. Of course, the most critical component that clinches it all together is just how straight the cast plays their parts to sell the absurdity of it all for laughs. It allows the humor of the situation to take center stage over the source material it’s drawing from to poke fun.

Ramras, Davidson, and Dorf transformed what could’ve easily become a standard lampooning of psychological thriller tropes with a brand of conventional humor. Instead, they opted for dry humor that doesn’t immediately show its hand. That can make for a rough adjustment period, but once acclimated, “The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window” blossoms into a gleeful romp whose punchline will leave you cackling in glee and bewilderment. The title may be tough to remember, but the finale sticks with you.

Netflix premieres “The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window” on January 28, 2022.

The post “The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window” Review – Netflix Series Hilariously Trolls Itself appeared first on Bloody Disgusting!.



source https://bloody-disgusting.com/reviews/3699558/review-netflixs-the-woman-in-the-house-across-the-street-from-the-girl-in-the-window-hilariously-trolls/

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