Synopsis: Louis Bloom (Gyllenhaal) is desperate for work when he discovers that TV news stations will pay for footage of accidents and crime scenes but how far will he go to get the scoop on other crime hacks?
Stan's thoughts: Bloom is a fascinating character. He initially appears a sad loner who spends his time doing online courses only to regurgitate chunks of what he's learned verbatim at what he feels are appropriate times. But as he gets a taste of success he becomes more manipulative and calculating.
He is generally friendly and polite with traces of that desperate loser bubbling beneath the surface but never wholly nice; there is something quietly sinister about him. He is in one sense perfect for the work he does lacking any scruples. The TV news stations he sells too, desperate for ratings, has little more by way of moral conscience. His footage is questioned but only as far as whether the footage is legal.
There are a couple of moral touchstones - a news producer and the intern Bloom takes on - in this cesspit where desperation and ratings war collide.
Nightcrawler is an uncomfortable watch but like the accidents and crimes Bloom films you can't tear your eyes away. It makes you leave the cinema feeling a little bit disgusted and a little bit of that is with yourself. Great performance from Gyllenhaal.
Rotten Tomatoes: 94%
RT Audience*: 87%
*% of people rating the film 3.5/5 or higher