Netflix’s “Fair Play,” the impressive feature debut by writer-director Chloe Domont, is a thought-provoking and innovative film that lingers in your mind long after the credits roll.
Where to Watch “Fair Play”
You can catch “Fair Play” exclusively on Netflix. The film boasts a talented cast, including Phoebe Dynevor, Alden Ehrenreich, Eddie Marsan, Rich Sommer, and Sebastian De Souza, and runs for a captivating 113 minutes.
“Fair Play” revolves around the lives of Emily (played by Phoebe Dynevor) and Luke (played by Alden Ehrenreich), co-workers at a prominent hedge fund company in New York City. However, they are harboring a secret – they are engaged and living together, a direct violation of company policy.
The couple has been adept at concealing their relationship, but their world turns upside down when a coveted promotion opportunity arises within the firm. While Luke initially expresses support for Emily’s promotion, his jealousy and resentment escalate as she assumes more responsibilities and spends evenings socializing with senior colleagues.
Why “Fair Play” is a Must-Watch
Chloe Domont masterfully exposes the frustrating challenges rooted in society’s ingrained gender roles, eliciting visceral reactions from the audience. The film’s exploration of these themes was so impactful that viewers at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) were tempted to shout at the screen in response to the characters’ actions and dialogues.
Domont’s depiction of these tensions and issues is what sets “Fair Play” apart. The screenplay is sharp and deliberate, delivering gut-wrenching moments and jaw-dropping lines. Domont takes her time to fully unravel the complexities that ultimately lead to the disintegration of Emily and Luke’s relationship.
Both Alden Ehrenreich and Phoebe Dynevor deliver remarkable performances, effectively conveying the intricate internal struggles of their characters. Ehrenreich chillingly portrays Luke’s simmering anger, while Dynevor captivatingly embodies the impact of Emily’s professional success. She grapples with fitting into a male-dominated workplace, perpetually feeling like an outsider.
Eddie Marsan, in the role of Emily’s boss Campbell, once again proves his prowess in portraying imposing characters with a hint of aggression, as exemplified in “Fair Play.”
Domont refrains from prescribing a particular viewpoint, allowing shades of gray in each character’s actions and fostering empathy for both Emily and Luke. This ambiguity makes the film all the more startling.
While “Fair Play” has been labeled an “erotic thriller,” its appeal lies not in its sensuality but in Domont’s adept use of intimacy to forge an emotional connection between Emily and Luke. It delves into the intricacies of their relationship, even depicting an intimate moment during Emily’s menstrual cycle.
What truly makes “Fair Play” disturbing is its reflection of unsettling realities. This film serves as a stark reminder of issues that persist in our society, making it a must-watch for everyone.
In a world where such dynamics continue to impact lives, “Fair Play” encourages dialogue and introspection, shedding light on the complexities of human relationships.