Settling down to watch The Nest at Sundance London, I found myself expecting a chilling horror film set in the backdrop of a grand house occupied by an unkowing wealthy family. I couldn't have been more wrong though and I find it great when that happens as it opens the door to something you were never expecting. With Jude Law and Carrie Coon leading the film, The Nest certainly has a pair of talented actors at its disposal as well.

Rory (Jude Law) is an ambitious entrepreneur who brings his American wife and kids to his native country, England, to explore new business opportunities. After abandoning the sanctuary of their safe American suburban surroundings, the family is plunged into the despair of an archaic '80s Britain and their unaffordable new life in an English manor house threatens to destroy the family.

The Nest is a film that possesses a rather intensely strained atmosphere that highlights the collapse of many of the relationships within the O'Hara family. It's a tightly written screenplay from Sean Durkin that slowly chips away at the cracks that start to show early on in proceedings. It's easy to see why I thought this was going to be a chilling horror with the way it opens and sets the scene. 

Alongside Mátyás Erdély's cinematography, Durkin's direction really suits the narrative to a tee. There's a distinctive visual style on show here, the 80s vibe coming to the fore and a cloud looming over proceedings as the strain on Rory and Allison's marriage becomes ever present with every passing minute.

Leading the film are two very different yet equally impressive performances from Jude Law and Carrie Coon as the married O'Hara couple. Law has played the rich yuppie type a few times before now and he really does excel at it, his turn as a gasbag of a man fuelled by nothing but greed one that really makes you want him to suffer such a fall from grace. Carrie Coon, as ever, is just a joy to watch, even if the film isn't about such a joyous subject. She just radiates such a screen presence and it's about time we saw her lead many more films moving forward.

While it may not be the most uplifting film out in cinemas, there's always something so fascinating about watching an on-screen family fall apart in front of our very eyes. 



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