“Drift,” a affected person character examine set on a craggy Greek island, proves a mesmerizing showcase for the actress Cynthia Erivo’s skills. She performs Jacqueline, a traumatized Liberian refugee whose cautious air is a delicate supply of ahead movement even because the movie round her stalls.
The story takes place throughout a season of vagrancy in Jacqueline’s life, monitoring her efforts to seek out shelter and sufficient meals to maintain from fainting. She spends her days promoting foot massages to sunbathers and her nights sleeping in sandy seashore nooks, and is commonly pictured alone in opposition to the coastal surroundings. Ultimately, she meets Callie (Alia Shawkat), a chatterbox American tour information whose starvation for friendship helps Jacqueline to open up.
The director, Anthony Chen, is delicate to Jacqueline’s struggles, and reveals her psychological state as a fragile equilibrium. The movie options restricted dialogue, and Erivo conveys feeling via physique language, expression and small glances. What emerges is a portrait of a younger girl utilizing survival mode as a method to stave off an impending breakdown.
“Drift” frames the supply of Jacqueline’s psychological torment as a thriller, meting out cryptic flashbacks to the character’s again story in Liberia. These scenes culminate in seemingly inevitable tragedy that the movie treats as a grand reveal. This upheaval is informative, however the movie is at its strongest when it lingers in current tense, exploring how Jacqueline’s strategically cultivated myopia retains her alive.
Not rated. Operating time: 1 hour 33 minutes. In theaters.