Tom Ford isn’t dabbling in filmmaking. While primarily a fashion designer, his 2009 debut A Single Man turned heads not only for its style but its deeply felt rumination on loss. He co-wrote and directed that project, and while its depth was a delightful surprise, it also set the bar very high for his sophomore effort.

We had to wait more than five years to get a second taste of his skills, and Nocturnal Animals doesn’t disappoint. I caught a screening at this year’s TIFF, and the main message I have is that you should look forward to this one.

Adapted from the book Tony and Susan, the film is a leap in terms of narrative complexity for Ford. It’s got a story-within-a-story plot, weaving the history of Amy Adams’ Susan and Jake Gyllenhaal’s Tony with the novel the latter is about to release. It’s no small task to shift between narrative threads as often as the film does, and the precision Ford brings to the endeavor is indicative of how seriously he is taking filmmaking.

source: Focus Features

Backing up all this effort is some excellent supporting performances from Michael Shannon and Aaron Taylor-Johnson. Yes, the bland lump that tried to hold 2014’s Godzilla together brims with menace and stands toe-to-toe with Shannon and Gyllenhaal, perhaps just in time to revitalize his career.

This trailer is a nice tease of everything the film has to offer. Nocturnal Animals is both familiar and riveting, showing Ford to be someone who has studied his craft. Just don’t get turned off by that opening sequence.

Nocturnal Animals is directed by Tom Ford and stars Amy Adams, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Michael Shannon. It will be released in the U.K. on November 4th, 2016. It will be released in the U.S. in select cinemas on November 18th, 2016 and nationwide on December 9th, 2016. For international release dates, click here.

Do you think Nocturnal Animals will solidify Ford’s reputation as a filmmaker? Let us know in the comments!

Does content like this matter to you?

Become a Member and support film journalism. Unlock access to all of Film Inquiry`s great articles. Join a community of like-minded readers who are passionate about cinema – get access to our private members Network, give back to independent filmmakers, and more.

Join now!

Posted by Contributor