A Cure for Wellness (DVD) – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Horror
Director: Gore Verbinski
Distributor: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
Duration: 146 minutes

A Cure for Wellness (DVD) – Movie Review

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Good: Music score
Bad: Quite lengthy
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Rating: 7.0/10 (1 vote cast)

In our hectic lives, it’s often everybody for themselves, when it comes down to it. Companies don’t get big showing compassion, they just go straight to their goal. While we’re all working ourselves to death, there also seems to be a new obsession for health. With our hectic lives, we all seem to have to suffer from something, so we can find a cure and be happy again. The world is a strange place, and you’ll feel even more convinced of that after watching this film.

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Lockhart (Dane DeHaan) is a young executive at a Wall Street financial firm. The CEO of the firm, Roland Pembroke (Harry Groener), left to take a cure in a wellness center in the Swiss Alps. The board desperately needs him back in New York, as he has to sign off on a merger that the company is about to undertake. Pembroke isn’t about to come home any time soon though. In a letter, he says that, deep down, we all have a sickness inside us, a sickness of always wanting to be more, be better, have more, regardless of other people or even what our own mind is telling us. “Only when we know what ails us, we can hope to find a cure”, is what he says, which is why he went to the wellness center, but the other members of the board are restless to get him back to the real world as soon as possible, and thus they send Lockhart over there to go and fetch him.

After a long journey, Lockhart arrives at the Swiss spa, only to be sent away by medical staff each time he asks to see Mr. Pembroke. Lockhart decides to leave and come again the next day, but on his way back to the village, he gets involved in a car crash, and is brought back to the center to have his broken leg treated. While recovering, he meets some of the center’s patients, such as Mrs. Watkins (Celia Imrie) and a girl named Hannah (Mia Goth). Mrs. Watkins tells him that the wellness center was built on the grounds where two hundred years ago, a mighty baron had his castle. The baron is said to have married his sister to ensure a pure bloodline, and when he found out she was unable to bear his children, he started experimenting with the water that sprung in the mountains, but he also conducted experiments on the peasants of the village. The story goes on even more gruesome, and when Hannah tells Lockhart that no one ever leaves the center, he starts to suspect that Dr. Volmer (Jason Isaacs), the director of the facility, is actually making his patients ill, so they long for a cure, a cure that only seems to make them more ill. Nonetheless, they all believe in the cure, but Lockhart is determined to get to the bottom of it.

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The story of this film is laid out quite meticulously, taking time to fully show all layers to the story. There are quite a lot of those, which makes the film rather mysterious, but at a length of almost two and a half hours, it probably could have been a bit more concise. While most of the film takes the mysterious, intriguing route, towards the end, when the story reaches its climax, the story starts moving quite fast, and truth be told, the climax was not completely what we had hoped for. The rest of the film having been so meticulously portrayed, it feels like there are too many random things going on at the end. Nonetheless, it still provides a thrilling experience.

What was really apparent in this movie was the music. Only two themes are used throughout the entire movie, but the melodies are so differently orchestrated that they fit almost every scene in the film. We found the music quite amazing, and thus worth a mention, as with so little, composer Benjamin Wallfisch managed to evoke a whole range of sentiments.

We’ve seen Dane DeHaan act before in the film Life, where he took up the role of James Dean. This time, he plays a completely different character, but proves that he was once again up for the job. His character develops quite a lot during the course of the movie, but not one time we found his acting to be sloppy. Also Mia Goth did a very good job, playing a character that is almost ten years younger than she is in real life.

A cure for wellness

The extras on this DVD release include a deleted sequence, some trailers, but also some meditations and an extra clip about the music in the film. The meditations are what stood out to us the most, not because they were the most interesting, but rather because they seemed quite random. Each of them is basically just a clip where a voice tells you to focus on the water, the air or the earth. A bit weird, but it fitted the theme well, we found.


A Cure for Wellness is a film with quite a mysterious plot that is certainly interesting, yet it’s quite lengthy, and becomes less cohesive towards the end. We did enjoy the film though, as the mystery does excite, and the acting performances were top notch. If you’ve got the time, it’s still worth the watch.

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A Cure for Wellness (DVD) - Movie Review, 7.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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