To an outsider looking in, Alice seems to have it all: She’s beautiful, has a fancy apartment, a booming career and a loving boyfriend. The catch? He’s married to someone else. Between attending “lovers anonymous” meetings and working, Alice decides to make her life a little easier by hiring the phlegmatic but helpful Shelly to clean her house. As Alice begins to confide in Shelly about her illicit affair, their friendship grows… and so does Shelly’s twisted obsession with her new employer. It soon becomes clear that Shelly has motives that reach further than a normal cleaning lady. Shelly wants to cleanse Alice’s entire life and will stop at nothing until she’s done.
I must confess that, after reading the summary of the new Jon Knautz thriller The Cleaning Lady, I was a bit skeptical as to whether I would like it or not. I feared it would be a situation like The Roommate or P2, where a the truly terrifying concept of someone you think you can trust enters your life only to later reveal they’ve had malicious intent from the beginning, is poorly executed. And in the case of The Cleaning Lady? I was pleasantly surprised to see this was not the case. Not by a long shot.
The film offers a new twist on a familiar concept and definitely surpassed my expectations. It’s full of twists and turns and truly keeps the viewer guessing right up until the final frame. The Cleaning Lady will undoubtedly leave viewers feeling more than a little unsettled.
Apart from the refreshing storyline I was also taken aback by how beautifully shot this picture was. Even during particularly tense scenes you can’t help noticing the stylish camerawork. I really dug this flick and look forward to watching it again in the near future.
The core cast all turn in terrific performances that help aid in immersing the viewer in their world for 90-minutes.
My only criticism (if you could call it that) is the ending. This is a spoiler free zone so I will only say that it left some unanswered questions. Although, the upside to such an abrupt ending is that it leaves room for interpretation in terms of the audience drawing their own conclusions. Or, perhaps the finale was hinting at a sequel. Which I certainly wouldn’t be opposed to.
If you’re in the market for a refreshing watch that is truly twisted, I highly recommend The Cleaning Lady! It is available On Demand, via Digital HD, and DVD June 4th!
Wicked Rating: 8/10
Director(s): Jon Knautz
Writer(s): Jon Knautz, Alexis Kendra
Starring: Alexis Kendra, Rachel Alig, Stelio Savante and JoAnne McGrath
Studio/Production Co: RLJE Films
Language: English with English and Spanish subtitles
Run Time: 90 Minutes