Review: ‘PUZZLE’ allows one woman to solve the enigma of herself.

PUZZLE is a closely observed portrait of Agnes, who has reached her early 40s without ever venturing far from home, family or the tight-knit immigrant community in which she was raised by her widowed father. That begins to change in a quietly dramatic fashion when Agnes receives a jigsaw puzzle as a birthday gift and experiences the heady thrill of not only doing something she enjoys, but being very, very good at it.

Kelly Macdonald gives a quietly passionate performance as Agnes, a woman whose personal growth is a joy to behold, a woman longing to be seen and understood. It is a role that will undoubtedly resonate with so many. Macdonald’s isolation is palpable.  Irrfan Khan has an effortless charm that captures the viewer. As Robert, he is a lonely genius. He, too, desires human connection. His performance is smart and tragic all at once.
Oftentimes, mothers lose their own identities tending to the needs of their families. Balancing loved ones and household management consumes who we once were and who we truly long to be. It is easy to get stuck in an endless cycle of chores and other people’s feelings. If you’re lucky enough to give yourself a voice, therein lies your truth. The film is not ultimately about puzzles, but they are a brilliant metaphor for relationships and the enigmatic ways of people. Puzzle illustrates the idea of not fitting into your expected place.

In Theaters July 27th!

Starring Kelly Macdonald (Golden Globe nominee for “Boardwalk Empire”, NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN, GOSFORD PARK), Irrfan Khan (THE LUNCHBOX, SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE, LIFE OF PI, David Denman (“The Office”, 13 HOURS), Bubba WeilerAustin Abrams

Directed by Marc Turtletaub (producer, LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE)

Written by Oren Moverman (Oscar nominee for Best Writing, Original Screenplay, THE MESSENGER)

Music by Dustin O’Halloran (Oscar nominee for Original Score, LION)

About Liz Whittemore

Liz grew up in northern Connecticut and was memorizing movie dialogue from Shirley Temple to A Nightmare on Elm Street at a very early age. She will watch just about any film all the way through (no matter how bad) just to prove a point. A loyal New Englander, a lover of Hollywood, and true inhabitant of The Big Apple.