Starring: Kristin Scott Thomas, Pio Marmai
Running time: 81 minutes
IN YOUR HANDS is a slow-burning, psychological drama from French writer and director Lola Doillon. Kristin Scott Thomas portrays a stern and dignified doctor held captive by a fragile and unpredictable man. The mystery surrounding their meeting develops steadily, as Scott Thomas’ Anna escapes from an apartment building only to return to daily life despite having disappeared weeks prior. Eventually, she arrives at a police station intending to reveal the truth… But why the wait?
To reveal too much about IN YOUR HANDS would be to sacrifice what makes it unique. This is a character piece, delving into the emotional ramifications of loss and guilt. Imprisoned by a damaged man looking for revenge, Scott Thomas gives a spectacular performance as the confident and fearless Anna. Subjected to psychological and physical abuse by captor Yann, the relationship between the pair gradually evolves into something more ambiguous. Yes, the Stockholm syndrome plot feels inevitable, but the mysterious duo keep the audience guessing as to how they will react.
IN YOUR HANDS feels like a film of two halves, with the claustrophobic setting of Anna’s prison jarring with life after her escape. The character’s actions aren’t necessarily relatable, admirable, or even slightly feministic, but they’re unmistakably human. IN YOUR HANDS presents two complex characters in a gripping scenario that steadily teases the viewer. It’s just a shame this foreplay doesn’t live up to the middling conclusion.