Nocturnal Animals : Subtle reflections of emotions.

Nocturnal Animal is a fantastic crime thriller directed by Tom Ford which was released on October 16, 2016. This blog is about how the director brilliantly tried to convey the character emotions with many subtle references.

This film had so many incidents that can be interpreted in many ways. Apart from that, there were few details which got my attention that told a lot about the character’s emotions and thoughts.

DISCLAIMER: The following are some of the subtle details that i found really interesting. These are my thoughts and ideas which can even be completely wrong.Major spoilers ahead.


1. Few scenes after the beginning, a parcel is getting arrived for Susan.She tries to open it and accidentally having a small paper cut on her fingers. That parcel contains a novel written by her ex-husband.

Interpretations :

This scene says about the nature of the novel i.e The content has violence and                           Susan is not ready to withstand the story.

This scene may also explains the fact that she is going to get hurt emotionally                          by this novel, after a while.


2. This one may sound crazy. LOL. In the scene when Susan and her current husband                 where talking about their relationship, Susan wanted to spend time with him.But,                 he makes an excuse saying he has some important works to do. During this                               conversation, he accidentally spills some sugar.

     Interpretation :

                This scene can be interpreted as the her husband spilled the sugar as he was bit                       nervous at that moment. The reason for his nervousness was he was hiding the                       fact that he is cheating his wife which was revealed later.

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3. Susan works in a modern art gallery.The director brilliantly used this asset to say about how she feels inside her. After she reads about the tragedy happened in the novel, she is somehow relating it with herself and Edward, her ex-husband. In one scene, Susan is looking at a bull stabbed with many arrows on it’s body. After that, she looks at a painting written, “REVENGE”.

Interpretation :

The stabbed bull explains the pain and worry she was suffering after reading the tragic incidents in the novel. She may be relating the story with Edward’s life (because, she imagines the novel’s lead character as Edward). The word, “REVENGE” was on the canvas foreshadows the film’s ending.



4. After the scene where Susan looks at the artworks, there was meeting happening with the the workers of the museum. In this scene, there were arguments about a particular employee whether to fire her or not. Susan, who insisted to fire her the previous week was changing her opinion in the present stating it’s not good to fire her as they were the ones who hired her for her skills.

Interpretation :

This actually signifies about the Susan inner mindset about the relationship with Edward. Though she was the one who called off the relationship, after reading the book now she regrets for breaking up with Edward. Now, she wants to somehow get in touch with him.

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5. When we see the young Susan, we notice her hair was loose and she didn’t look like she had any makeup. She looked very natural. Whereas, the Susan in the present is very artificial which is evident her neat hair and professional clothing. At the end of the film when she gets ready to meet Edward, she wears a green outfit which is contradictory to her usual clothing style and we can see her wiping off her lipstick.


Susan’s costumes told a lot about her feelings. The younger Susan was free minded. She didn’t mind much about how she looks. Her body language and the way she speaks denotes that she is just an another charming, happy girl free of worries.  Whereas, the present Susan looks very corporate and and her body language looks a bit mechanic. Her dark choice of colors and her dull eyes explains she is experiencing some mental difficulties and thus, she could not sleep. When she wanted to meet Edward again, she wanted to go as the Susan he remembers rather the present Susan. Thus, she wears a green dress( Green: positive ) and she wipes off her lipstick which is like throwing off the mask she’s wearing.



Thanks for reading.If you find any more interesting details other than these, feel free to tell me that i can add here.



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