Birth | Chicago Reader

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In this eerily tranquil psychological thriller, Nicole Kidman's placid countenance is like a Rorschach: you'll project onto it what you want to see. A widow on the verge of remarrying, she's troubled by the arrival of a ten-year-old boy (Cameron Bright) who claims to be the reincarnation of her dead husband. In extreme close-ups, Kidman stares impassively at nothing. Does she believe the kid? Is he crazy? Is she? Director Jonathan Glazer (Sexy Beast) unnerves us with an almost sleepy tone, helped by Alexandre Desplat's lush score. The atmosphere is really the point, though I wish the script weren't quite so elliptical. With Danny Huston and Lauren Bacall. R, 100 min.

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