The Perfection did something few movies have managed to do lately: it escaped its own trailer's gravity well.
Not entirely, mind you. There is enough on the trailer that I wouldn't recommend watching it anywhere close to the movie. But for once, we get a preview that is not the best 90 seconds and all the major plot points. Not in any way that you'd know before seeing the movie.
A young cellist who stopped playing because of a family illness meets the younger, just as gorgeous, much more successful performer who replaced her in her mentor's attention. The one that made it. Hell hath no fury.
I don't want to say too much. Imagine if Damien Chazelle had chosen to make Whiplash as a tarted-up, trashy B-movie, and that gets you in the ballpark.
It has character in spades, something that neither director Richard Shepard's Matador nor Dom Hemingway had. (Dom kinda tried, in its own “Nick Hornby as seen through too much Guy Ritchie” sort of way, but describing it like that makes it sound better than it was.)
The Perfection makes up for it. It's a got prurient fixation on escalating situations, complicating build-up after build-up, faking out a release before ramping things up again, a fractal Venus flytrap of a garish plot. I hadn't seen anything aim for that blend of well-manicured and crass in recent memory.
It can verge on tawdry, sure, but if you're going to do exploitation, you might as well do it in style.