Saltburn Review: Lust, Envy, and Toxic Elitism

Saltburn Review

Welcome to our in-depth review of “Saltburn,” a film directed by Emerald Fennell and featured in The New York Times. In this article, we will delve into the world of “Saltburn,” exploring its themes of lust, envy, and toxic elitism. Join us as we analyze the plot, characters, and cinematic elements that make this film both intriguing and perplexing. Let’s dive in!

The Plot Unveiled

“Saltburn” takes us on a journey into the lives of two Oxford students, Oliver and Felix. Their friendship, filled with imbalances and obsessions, leads them to Felix’s family estate, Saltburn. As the story unfolds, lust and envy begin to overshadow their bond, unraveling a complex web of relationships and secrets.

The Intriguing Characters

Oliver: The Bookish Dreamer

Oliver, played by Barry Keoghan, is the epitome of a bookish dreamer. His erudition and blue eyes catch the attention of Felix’s mother and sister, leading to unforeseen consequences. As the film progresses, we witness Oliver’s transformation from a mild-mannered student to a cunning player in the game of lust.

Felix: The Rakish Charmer

Jacob Elordi brings Felix to life, a rakish charmer who thrives on attention and indulgence. With his aristocratic background, Felix embodies the toxic elitism that permeates the story. His effortless charisma draws people in, but beneath the surface lies a darkness that threatens to consume them all.

Elspeth: The Droll Matriarch

Rosamund Pike portrays Elspeth, Felix’s mother, with her usual brilliance. Elspeth exudes a dry wit and a sense of entitlement, adding depth to the portrayal of the upper-class elite. Her interactions with Oliver provide a glimpse into the intricate dynamics of power and manipulation.

Venetia: The Self-Conscious Zombie

Alison Oliver takes on the role of Venetia, Felix’s self-conscious sister. Venetia’s fascination with Oliver sparks envy and sets off a chain of events that further entangles the characters. Her inner struggles and desire for validation create a compelling subplot within the film.

The Cinematic Experience

A Visual Feast

Emerald Fennell’s directorial prowess is on full display in “Saltburn.” The film’s cinematography captures the opulence of Saltburn’s estate, with its Baroque mansion, stunning portraiture, and lush gardens. The visual elements create an immersive experience, drawing us into the world of the characters.

The Soundtrack that Sets the Mood

The film’s soundtrack, carefully curated, enhances the atmosphere and amplifies the emotions on screen. From haunting melodies to energetic beats, the music guides us through the twists and turns of the plot. Fennell’s choice of songs adds an extra layer of intrigue to the storytelling.

The Dichotomy of Lust and Envy

“Lust and envy” are the driving forces behind the narrative of “Saltburn.” Fennell skillfully weaves these themes throughout the film, exploring the destructive power they hold over the characters. The dichotomy between desire and jealousy adds complexity and depth to their relationships.

The Perplexing Questions

  1. Will Oliver succumb to the allure of lust and abandon his moral compass?
  2. How will Felix’s toxic elitism impact those around him?
  3. Can Oliver break free from the web of envy that entangles him?

Final Words:

In conclusion, “Saltburn” is a film that delves into the dark underbelly of lust, envy, and toxic elitism. With its intriguing characters, stunning visuals, and captivating soundtrack, it offers a unique cinematic experience. Emerald Fennell’s directorial choices leave us with perplexing questions, making “Saltburn” a thought-provoking and enigmatic film.