Just watched Nightcrawler. Very weird, very intense movie. Spoilers ahead!
It took me some time to come to terms with Jake Gyllenhaal’s character in the movie. A person who knew what he wanted. I guess it didn’t start that way. When did he convert from being a human to being a psychopath? He is probably in his early 30’s in the movie? Kind of a recluse, not very much a people’s person — he admits he doesn’t like people. He sees this “nightcrawler” — freelance reporters who are scanning police sirens and running after stories — filming them so as to sell it to news channels, and make some money out of it. Lou (Jake) decides to do just that.
Before this too I guess he knew what he wanted. He had a $8,000 bike, that he says he won the tour-de-mexico on. Of course he may be lying. Maybe the bike was stolen too? He is shown to be a thief in the beginning of the movie. Using knowledge he gathered online, he could have easily sounded very knowledgeable to the old man at the bike store and sold it off for 800 bucks.
But then his speech. He is well informed, or maybe just enough informed to sound intelligent to the people he is talking to. And he is smart. He knows how to manipulate people — and not in a pleasing way — in a very direct in-your-face way. Not a people’s person. And he is a psycopath.
Phew. Thats intense. Very intense and somewhat scary. You don’t want to cross paths with one of those. “A Friend is a gift you give yourself” Lou quotes Robert Louis Stevenson on this. Done in a very pedantic manner without of course having any understanding of range of human sentiments.
Sensing he is dealing with a private security in the beginning of the movie, he tackles him and robs him of his watch. And his character just becomes darker as the movie progresses. He forces the TV news director to have a physical relationship with him if she wants his video footages. This he does in a very educated calculating manner — evaluating her weaknesses and how badly she needs the video footage he brings and what price she would be willing to pay for it. At a scene of an accident. he reaches before the police and shifts the dead body on the scene so that it is a better light for his shoot. He withholds footage of killers in a crime scene so that he could get a footage of their arrest in a restaurant — something he orchestrates, resulting in a shoot out in a public place and a few deaths — and still gets away with it using his intelligence.
So much rested on his ability to be the best in what he does, he decides to eliminate competition by removing the brakes from their van! His calm demeanor with a hidden rage and street smartness armed with knowledge gained by sitting in front of a computer whole day made him a very deadly person. He uses this to deliberately kill his partner!
A very dark movie and not a pleasant watch, yet gripping.