What We Know About ‘A Cure For Wellness’
A Cure for Wellness tells the story of a stubborn and ambition young executive who is sent to retrieve his company’s CEO from a mysterious “wellness center” at a remote location in the Swiss Alps. Once he gets there, he suspects that the spa’s “miraculous” treatments are not what they seem. As he begins to investigate the terrifying secrets, his sanity is tested when he finds that he is diagnosed with the same illness that keeps all the guests at the center longing for a cure.
Fox screened thirty minutes of Gore Verbinski’s mystery thriller A Cure for Wellness at the 20th Century Fox lot last week, and it’s a hell of a lot different from his recent directorial efforts. Moving away from the big-budget Pirates of the Caribbean movies and the family-friendly affairs, A Cure for Wellness is a return to the weird and original for Mr. Verbinski. Here’s what we learned about he project.
Verbinski spilled a few details on the thriller, focusing on the fact that it was a big task to make an utterly original feature. There are lots of tests and trials when making an original story, “It’s a challenge. We’re not based on a theme park ride, or don’t have any toys. We don’t have ambitions to make a sequel or anything. It’s a big ask to get people to come to the theater.” Though it certainly is a challenge, Verbinski’s track record should be enough to get butts in seats.
It’s been over a decade since Verbinski directed The Ring. Returning to the mystery/horror genre was a trying experience for the filmmaker, “You have people in a dark room and you’re conducting an experiment on them with sound and image. I find the genre very liberating in many ways. It’s nice to change it up. It’s two and a half years of staying in a very dark place. I’m not out of the dark place yet.”
Inspiration for the film was drawn from one of Thomas Mann’s books, “We’re both fans of The Magic Mountain, Thomas Mann’s book. The premise of that book was loosley adapted, along with a lot of strange dreams. The genre allows you to take people into a dream logic narrative. You’re not burdened with the traditional linear narrative. It sort of makes sense the way your nightmares make sense.”
From the opening titles of A Cure for Wellness, a very dark mood is introduced. Verbinski’s dark vision channels Stanley Kubrick and Martin Scorsese, among other visionary filmmakers. Once our protagonist (Dane DeHaan) arrives at the wellness center, lots of Shutter Island vibes are present. Verbinski seems to be focusing on themes of deception and manipulation that affects our arrogant protagonist.