You know what baffles me the most, it is that it is thoroughly entertaining.
The writer and director Jennifer Kent’s period drama is a gut wrenching action film done right. And it is film-sy, no matter how much it may deny. And it is a revenge based action thriller, just polished better. I mean it is no F. Gary Gray’s ’90s action film and neither some Mel Gibson’s buddy cop adventure. Yet, I find hints of both of those personalities present in them. If it has the balance of, say.. Gray’s The Negotiator then it also has Gibson’s loftiness from the Lethal Weapon franchise. The balance as in we are given glimpses of both the parties. The good and the bad. The good suffers and tries to and does win, the little wins as much as they can. And the bad celebrates without enjoying by perpetually dying and losing in front of their own eyes.
There is crude grammar in the script that it foliates in the face of horror; Kent returns back to her genre every now and then to be honest and truthful to these tragic characters and the tragedy they are a part of. And there is also one of the best friendships created and solidified in this dreadful journey. There is innocence and real persuasion on what or where they are going towards. Not just directions but the company too is what’s at a loss here.
And you can see that in both those sides. The bad ones are hunting together out of fear and not compassion while the good ones have suffered too much to trust a single soul to sleep blindly and sing loudly. Reaching out to their art forms is how The Nightingale showcases their destination to salvation. The revenge, the blood, the rituals, the dance, the birds and the madness, that’s all spiciness toasted for a gripping narration.