The Haunting of Bly Manor hit Netflix on Friday.
If you're still traumatized by the Netflix series The Haunting of Hill House, prepare to sink into a dark hole again.follows his first entry in the horror anthology , a Gothic Romantic-influenced ghost story based on Henry James' novella The Turn of The Screw, which is now being streamed.
Set in the '80s and some of the same cast members from Hill House, Flanagan unfolds another beautiful tragedy with meticulous attention to detail and characters more haunted than. It's perfect for .
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The pieces don't go together as well as Hill House, with narrative choices that often lead to epiphany outbreaks, but also to unnecessary overcomplications.
Even so, Flanagan admirably opens new doors in the haunted universe and gathers us by the fireplace to tell a story about the found family and doomed love. It's just as hypnotic and draws you into deep meditation on how to live after grief and loss.
Hannah Grose (T & # 39; Nia Miller), Miles Wingrave (Benjamin Evan Ainsworth), Owen (Rahul Kohli) and Dani (Victoria Pedretti).
Victoria Pedretti, who originally played Nell, returns to play Dani Clayton, a young American au pair with as many secrets as the family she hired for.
Located in beautiful Bly Manor in the midst of the emerald green English countryside, she has two beautiful children: Miles and Flora Wingrave, played by Benjamin Evan Ainsworth and Amelie Smith.
But things are not what they seem: the housekeeper Hannah Grose (T & # 39; Nia Miller) keeps skipping meals, house cook Owen (Rahul Kohli) describes Bly as a "gravity well", the people and gardener Jamie (Amelia Eve ) trapped – well, she's sarcastic, cool, and kept to herself so there must be some hidden darkness.
Henry Thomas as Henry Wingrave.
Just like in the novella, the governess begins to see people that no one else seems to see. There is a mystery around the deaths of Mama and Papa Wingrave and the former governess Rebecca Jessel (Tahirah Sharif), who drowned in the nearby lake.
It begins a bit like an Agatha Christie novel in which Henry Thomas, the father at Hill House, returns to play whiskey and abuse Uncle Wingrave, whose classy English accent is never entirely used. Other Hill House faces like Oliver Jackson-Cohen and Kate Siegal also have new roles, which makes even more sense that ghosts are everywhere.
Flanagan has a remarkable way of ensuring that you take care of his characters by getting you involved in their psychological trauma. Instead of focusing on a character and their backstory during an episode, he uses monologues, a supernatural doppelganger, and a maze of memories to uncover hidden scars.
Occasionally, penny dreadful-style philosophical conversations about life and death slow the story down. Flanagan's Arcade of Spirits continues to serve a double duty as a metaphor for grief and loss, but this time he decides to make it real and explain its origins. It takes an episode to do narrative heavy lifting – and it comes out a little disjointed.
Overall, however, Bly Manor is hypnotic. It will hold you tight with the sad gaze of a character or trigger a state of wonder with the surprisingly magical score by The Newton Brothers. A warm glow adds to the romance of the surroundings, but the grand mansion itself makes a dripping tap sound like a shot.
It's less scary than Hill House, with imagery that doesn't quite match the memorable Bent Neck Lady. But Bly Manors Jumpscares have an extra dash of psychological terror and Flanagan, this time with a host of directors, continues to fill frames with negative space that is alive with mirrors, doors and curtains.
The story isn't as powerful as the Crain family drama, but The Haunting of Bly Manor will stay with you for days. Prepare for it to wring your chest out in the same painful but exhilarating way.
The Haunting of Bly Manor hits Netflix on Friday.
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