Review: Rebecca Hall Gives the Performance of the Year in 'Christine'

Ivy Richmond Sears ’19 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
On July 15, 1974 television history was changed forever when Christine Chubbuck, a Sarasota, Florida reporter, shot herself on live TV. This tragic story is the basis for Antonio Campos’s new film Christine. Christine masterfully examines the pain and inner turmoil Chubbuck went through, both personally and professionally, before making the decision to take her own life.

Rebecca Hall in Christine. Image Credit: The Orchard
Christine takes place in the 70s, but could not feel more relevant. Every dark and twisted thought Christine Chubbuck had still feels important today. Depression is as alive now as it was 40 years ago and that is the magic of Christine. Everyone has had a bad day at work, or felt inadequate, and Antonio Campos plays on those feelings to create an uncomfortable and all too real world. It’s a world that begs to be seen and it definitely deserves our attention.
Antonio Campos knew exactly what decisions to make to create a masterpiece, and perhaps his best decision was casting Rebecca Hall as the title character. Hall gives a quiet yet powerful performance as the deeply depressed Christine. Hall’s performance in Christine is beautiful and awkward nailing everything from the crunched walk to the deep desire to succeed in a world she never could quite fit into. She created a full character out of a woman known for a two minute video. In a potentially very crowded race for Best Actress this year at the Academy Awards, no one seems as poised or deserving of recognition then Rebecca Hall. She should absolutely be nominated for an Oscar. This is very likely the performance of the year and it would be a sin to omit Hall’s talent.
Michael C. Hall in Christine. Image Credit: The Orchard
Christine’s co-worker and good friend Jean says at one point “when I’m sad I like to get an ice cream cone and sing.” This is the crux of Christine, the idea that only someone who is dealing with mental illness truly understands what it’s like to be sick. Jean can sing and be fine, Christine cannot. Christine suffered alone. Her friends, co-workers, and family tried to help her, but no one had any idea what she needed. This is part of the silent beauty of Christine, you never get a villain. You want to be able to blame someone for her death, but the truth is the only villain is mental illness. She was a victim of her own mind, and everyone working on this film clearly understood the tragedy of living in an isolated world.
Christine is a must see film. It is painful and uncomfortable and amazing. Rebecca Hall gives one of the performances of the year and deserves everyones attention. It doesn’t matter if you know the story going in, or have never heard the name Christine Chubbuck before, you will leave never being able to forget her. Rebecca Hall makes sure that audiences will remember this film for years to come, so do yourself a favor and go see it as soon as you possibly can. It is completely worth the trip.
Overall Grade: A

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