The Jane Doe identity, an experience of horror very different from the Troll Hunters, the found footage, which has made known its director, André Øvredal, six years earlier.
When the police brings in the immaculate body of one Jane Doe ” (a term designating a woman of unknown identity), Tommy Tilden and his son, coroners, believe that the autopsy will not be a mere formality. As of the night, they never cease to discover things that are strange and disturbing to the inside of the body of the deceased. As they begin to assemble the pieces of a mysterious puzzle, a supernatural force makes its appearance in the crematorium…
The decor is quickly posed : a camera, two actors, the survey anatomical as the red thread of the story. One could almost speak about a efficiency of high-concept, those who sharpen just the appetite of festival-goers (those of Gerardmer, where was presented the film). Worn by two performers of choice (Emile Hirsh and Brian Cox), the film manages to instill an emotional stake through a father/son relationship which blends the awkwardness of a variety of feelings, modesty, compassion through the guilt; braiding and a context that is credible to the drama, where other entertainment prefer the simple sequence of the plot, to the neglect of the involvement of the viewer.
THE JANE DOE IDENTITY looks suspiciously at all of these first films made by scandinavian on american soil : an exploration of a genre codified, or even locked, by an author trying to print as well as they could, one leg in particular. We think of Fear X by Nicolas Winding Refn, or the “It’s all about Love by Thomas Vinterberg, strange objects on film with a I-don’t-know-what-fascinating, but not enough to make something memorable. In the same way THE JANE DOE IDENTITY, expressed a management of the pace and empathy rather interesting. André Øvredal offers an approach that is extremely precise, almost documentary -punctuated by tiny hints of the supernatural, to introduce its two protagonists as well as their profession of forensic pathologists during a first part pleasant and weighty.
We regret, however, that Øvredal has not been able to confine the narrative to the only place in the operating room, and feels compelled in the last third of the film to accumulate the effects of horrific spectacular and agreed, where an amateur horror precisely measured and insidiously brought in, would have preferred to keep the impression of unspeakable anguish in the beginning. The idea is to superimpose on the autopsy of the body, the story of terror in its entirety, to associate each step to a revelation, and a code of this kind, the concept would have seemed even better if the camera remained focused on the operation. Despite this weakness, the idea remains sufficiently readable on the screen, and what a pleasure to see a film that really makes a pinball machine.
By Arkham and Georgeslechameau
THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE has been presented in competition at the festival du film fantastique de Gérardmer 2017, in which our dear Arkham was a member of the Jury SyFy. If their choice turned unanimously to the huge Under-The-Shadow, the film by André Øvredal remained one of their little favourites.
• Realization : André Øvredal
• Scenario : Ian B. Goldberg and Richard Naing
• Main actors : Emile Hirsch, Brian Cox,Ophelia Lovibond
• Release Date : 31-may-201731 may 2017
• Duration : 1h39min