Dark Places (2015)
Starring: Charlize Theron, Corey Stoll, Nicholas Hoult, Tye Sheridan, Chloë Grace Moretz, Sean Bridgers,
Plot: Libby Day was only seven years old when her family was brutally murdered in their rural Kansas farmhouse. Twenty-five years later, she agrees to revisit the crime and uncovers the wrenching truths that led up to that tragic night.
My Review and Thoughts:
This is a very interesting crime drama thick with mystery and an adrenaline inducing reality. As you watch the story unfold, it shoots back in time to 1985, and to the present day. In 1985 Libby was the only survivor of her family’s massacre. Her teenage brother Benjamin was convicted of the crime. In the present she is now contacted by a young man named Lyle who runs a Kill Club. People who are interested in True Crime. Once there she realizes she has been lied to. The group believes Benjamin is innocent.
The movie is very weird, and it has some odd realities to the way it's filmed. You flash back to Libby's perspective of the crime through her eyes. A dream like nightmare. Libby as an adult is a very unlikable person at first. Tense, angry, frustrated and plain rude and mean. The rude and mean is almost too much, and it turns you off a little. The attitude is a little too strong, but thankfully that changes as the movie moves forward.
The acting by all is brilliant. The extraordinary talented Charlize Theron as your main character, Libby. The equally wonderful Corey Stoll as the grown up Benjamin. Also Nicholas Hoult as Lyle, the leader of the Kill Group. All three are pure cinema. The chemistry and acting by all three are very memorable. Also starring a young cast of phenomenal actors and actresses. The very handsome Tye Sheridan. He plays the teenage Benjamin to a flawless, believable degree. Also Chloë Grace Moretz is stunning as always.
The movie is a thick layered story of suspense and a mystery that slowly unravels before your eyes. A mix alongside the Satanic Panic of the 80's, a small town, secrets and lies, rumors, allegations. The film comes off as a, who-dun-nit roller coaster of twists and turns.
Libby who is strapped for cash agrees to help the group on their little journey of trying to find the truth of the crimes. Libby thinks they are crazy. She testified and believes her brother is guilty, but she needs money, and so she goes along with it. Soon she finds herself smack dab in a spiraling dark drama, both haunting and realistic.
This is directed by Gilles Paquet-Brenner. Brenner did a fantastic job in capturing a darkness on screen. A deep, thick, black darkness of emotions. A darkened vision of the 80's, murder, Satan worship, and an unrelenting journey of small town lies, and brutal truth. Brenner directed one of my favorite films, 2010's Sarah's Key, if you haven’t seen that movie I highly recommend you do so. Dark Places is based on the book by the same name, written by a truly wonderful dark storyteller, Gillian Flynn. Gillian is famous this day through her books, and also mainly for the film adaption of her book, Gone Girl directed by David Fincher.
A great dark suspense film. Twists and turns. A spooky tense reality of just what lies can lead to. Solid direction. Wonderful acting. A story that flows with equal brilliance and brutality. Lies, emotions, forgiveness.