Death of the Critic

Jake Gyllenhaal

Anatomy of a Character - Nightcrawler

Written by: Tom Blaich


It is hard to describe what “creepiness” is, the feeling of existential dread that it fosters deep within you, an inability to look away in fear of what might happen if you do, an uncertainty of what exactly is going on. And it’s a feeling that the oddly stoic Gyllenhaal nails to a T with the character of Lou Bloom. From the moment that he is introduced until the credits roll, he demands your attention, much in the same way as a wild animal or poisonous insect, calmly watching you back, his wide eyes searching for weakness.

From the moment that he is introduced to us, we watch him try to approximate normal human behavior. Behind his smiling mask, there is an anger simmering just below the surface. But the scariest part about him is not this rage. It is that this anger might just be another mask, trying to pass for normal human emotions.