Night Film by Marisha Pessl – A Review

19 Sep

nightfilm

It makes me sad that I will probably never read Night Film again. Never be wrapped up in its intricate mystery, coiled within its specific flavor of suspicious magic and the living/throbbing rumors spider-webbing outward from a genius artist of the dark’s glorious offspring: in this case, fictitious films. But I will not reveal any aspect of its deftly executed plot, filled with surprises until the very last sentence. I may as well admit that I have started many thrillers during my life but finished few. Why? The mystery usually withers too early on, becomes too convoluted, or the hero is imbued with unrealistic buoyancy and shackled to wisecracking-but-tiresomely-clever dialogue while strapped with an increasingly redundant dilemma/dangerous foes until the suspense predictably ratchets to a boiling point of a ready-to-pop climax, leaving this reader to sigh in apathy at its lack of lurid shocks and basic invisibility. But this novel lives on until its very end, blowing smoke at the mind’s conclusions while confuscating our very perception as to what it means to take part in a living, breathing work of art as it unfolds and generates meaning. So maybe I shouldn’t be so sad; maybe I can one day read this magnificent diamond-cut tomb once again and be equally as transfixed and romanced; to make it be like a Madeleine cookie wherein I will someday retrieve who I once was these last few weeks: becoming one of those timeless works that, for a moment, opened a world of infinite possibility—because: we will always be in need of stories to shape our present and throw us back to what has passed—and is still passing—somewhere close.

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