The Wedding Crashers star, who is known for her comedy roles, admits she wasn't fully prepared for the mental toll her role in Tom Ford's dark psychological thriller would have on her, as her character suffers through a family carjacking before she and her daughter are raped and murdered.

The shoot was so harrowing, Isla confessed, "I can't even watch those scenes back!"

"We shot in the Mojave Desert and it was a night shoot that lasted for a week and a half...," she recalled on U.S. breakfast show Today. "You know, normally I end a movie and I miss everybody and I wanna stay forever; this, I was like, 'See ya later!'"

The movie stars Amy Adams as an art gallery owner who is haunted by a dark manuscript sent to her by her ex-husband, played by Jake Gyllenhaal. Isla's storyline is that featured in the vicious cat-and-mouse novel, and even though she knew it wasn't a true story, the plot was still hard for her to digest.

"It was just so emotionally draining to do that kind of material and have it look real," she explained. "You have to really commit to it and it's a physical element. This movie is really about emotional violence and not physical violence, but my scenes, which are basically fictitious - they're (from) a book that Amy Adams' character is reading - it's still, it's just a lot; it was a lot to take on."

The film, based on the 1993 novel Tony and Susan by Austin Wright, marks fashion designer Tom Ford's second directorial project, and Isla cannot stop gushing about his talents behind the camera.

"Tom Ford's amazing, he is just such a great guy," she smiled. "I knew him as a fashion designer, but to work with him one on one as a filmmaker, he has an incredible eye for detail... He's approachable even though he's so dapper and clever... he's just a really great guy. I really enjoyed it, I think he's a brilliant director."

Nocturnal Animals also features Michael Shannon, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Laura Linney, and Michael Sheen, and hits theatres next week (23Nov16).