ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Haunting and Spellbinding: Scarlett Johansson in Under the Skin Movie

Updated on April 21, 2014

Not sure where to begin. Actually, I do. As I sat there watching this sci-fi movie with absolutely no CGI that I could see, the movie is mesmerizing, creepy, moody, dark, haunting, because of its one and only movie star-Scarlett Johansson. It is her monologue of a movie. Just like the recent Robert Redford movie, where he is on his boat that is sinking very slowly.

These kind of movies are extremely difficult to make. You have a single actor that must carry the audience and advance the movie. The script and acting must engage the audience to avoid boredom. The director has to pull all the tricks out.

Under the Skin is a sci-fi movie but devoid of any CGI effects and very little action. There are no space ships because it is about an alien who has landed on earth (movie was filmed in Scotland) and who survives via having sex with strangers-single and unattached. The alien has "helpers" who keeps things in check. Rated R for nudity, frontal shots of her and men, it is not, by any means, an excuse to make a sex movie because very little acts are shown. It just happens that the alien (Scarlett is stunning here, yet, cold and indifferent about it) must lure men into an abandoned house for sex that never actually happens. The men are lusting after her as she strips, but as the men approach, they sink into a black substance and eventually consumed- they explode. Very weird to see this and so artistic.

As the movie rolls along, I kept watching and wondered what is going to happen, Scarlett's performance is perfect-no emotion as she tries to learn and survive on Earth. She ventures off on her own to experience what the elements offer-cold, wind, fog, does not effect her to the dismay of humans. While she interacts well with humans, there are hiccups where she "goes blank" as to what to say or do. Even when she does have sex for real with a man, she has no idea what just happened. The man has no idea what is wrong with her. This really disturbs her alien being and she just gets up and leaves and ventures into the woods to escape.

Having never eaten earthly food, when she enters a roadside diner, she does not know really what to do. She looks around and copies what others are doing. When the cake she ordered arrives, she fiddles with the fork and has a piece of cake. She is robotic. As a viewer, you are wondering about every scene change as to what will happen. Here, she seems to like the cake but suddenly and violently, she pukes it up. Lots of eyes watching.

Any gripping movie relies on its cinematography and soundtrack. Scotland was perfect for this and the music always warns the viewer something is coming. It is a very eerie soundtrack and sparsely used. In fact, unlike many movies, this is a sparse movie in dialogue and music. All this creates a suspense, a compelling suspense that makes the viewer want to watch. The movie is not boring at all because of it.

As the alien deals with humans, she is callous and does not understand emotion like the scene on the beach when she leaves a baby crying on the beach after the parents are killed and the surf is close. In conversing with humans, it is a limited vocabulary and many times she just "goes blank".

The reason why she leads men on into sex and into the black liquid is not totally clear. Since there is no sex between them, I failed to understand her need for it. How does it "feed" her? In the final scene of this 108 min. movie, a man following her in the woods tries to rape her until her human skin facade begins to peel off when she fights him off (she does not like having human sex). This is where some special effects enter. The man scared as to what he got himself into gets some gasoline and pours it on her. By now, the REAL alien is revealed totally black yet beautiful as she peels her human skin off. The scene is startling. The man tosses a match and she slowly burns. Her soul goes up in smoke.

As a viewer, you leave thinking about the movie. It leaves an impact on you. Scarlett was perfect for this-beautiful and icy. The Scottish accents tended to make it even more alien to an American ear. The artistic and music qualities linger in your mind.

Go see it.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)