It’s the characters that make no sense. Joffe may hide Riseborough’s fine features, porcelain skin, and slim figure behind a frowsy mop of hair, glasses, and shapeless coats, but she doesn’t read convincingly as someone whose self-esteem is so low that the cold comfort of a brutal killer is her only way out. And while Riley works wonders with Pinkie’s icy viciousness, the character’s early flashes of conscience, hesitation, and even vulnerability are never resolved with the implacable fiend he becomes immediately thereafter. Catholicism and matters of faith are never far from the heart of Greene’s work. A gargantuan crucifix looms in one memorable shot, but despite a few mentions and a quick prayer in a harried moment, the fear of God remains abstract. By the dramatic denouement, Pinkie’s a movie monster, not the flesh-and-blood kind Greene created, and Joffe pulls the final punch in a maddeningly feeble way.