Look who’s coming to dinner
Trying to understand people’s lives, what makes them tick, who they are, is difficult. This becomes even more impossible when someone joins the Army, is deployed and never seen again whilst still being young. Who they were becomes distant; memories are pinned together through sheer desperation to keep a lover/friend/spouse/sibling or child alive.
The Guest begins as a family’s life, figuratively ends. Compartmentalizing grief and still trying to carry on an existence shows a husband trying to better his job, a mother care for 2 more children that are still dependent and alive, a son trying to overcome bullies and a daughter deal with a family that are at the end of their thither. This is all until strong and silent David (Dan Stevens) enters their bubble, buddies with their late son and back to tie up loose ends with the Peterson family.
The film immediately sparks with a darkness and uncertainty, similar to Drive, something is not quite right with the new set up and the visitor that has landed on their doorstep in the middle of nowhere. A tense air with a slight threat moves its way from scene to scene. From arrival through to meeting the dad, who is concerned with PTSD, everyone warms to him. He becomes the extra son they didn’t want, but now have. PTSD is not something that anyone needs to worry about; PTSD crazy is an after effect of a traumatic event. David is crazy on a whole new level, but is there to help, don’t forget.
Dan Stevens, who previously starred in Downton Abbey, could not have been further away from an English Period Drama if he tried. The Guest is a whole new kettle of fish, an American thriller feature film. Having auditioned for the part and nailed every aspect in the director’s eyes, Stevens could potentially be a force to be reckoned with as a new Terminator/Jason Bourne.
Anyone that watches this will fall under David’s charm or wrath. His supporting cast but more importantly Maika Monroe (Anna), Leland Orser (Dad), and Brendon Meyer (Son) perfectly accentuate the characters David’s mental instability despite all being unstable themselves.