Having never read the best seller by author Delia Owens, or know anything about the premise, it was with great pleasure to let this evocative potboiler unravel before my eyes with further gratification to be had watching astonishing London girl Daisy Edgar-Jones, flawlessly portray the North Carolina protagonist Kya.
Known as ‘Marsh Girl‘, Kya has a temperamental reputation among the locals that turns sinister when hauled into custody by authorities accusing her of murder.
Passive, creative and meticulous lawyer Tom (David Strathairn) extensively attempts to prove her innocence.
Regular flashbacks go deep into turgid background and harsh upbringing of Kya as the trial plays out in present time.
There’s survivalist romance with murder mystery interspersed alongside brief joyous and dark southern traditions.
Slow moving all the way, so be prepared for long periods of very little activity, slender moody atmosphere often replace dramatic beats. Edgar-Jones is a true commanding force. I’ve enjoyed quality from her in everything since first spotting her rise in, Normal People (2020). Harris Dickinson is also quite good as Chase.
Not sure how the Lucy Alibar screenplay may differ from the novel, however this is an exceptional film if you can handle the snail-like, gradual pace.
Lucy was Oscar nominated for indie gem, Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012) so she knows her way around a backwater bayou.
Drama, Mystery | USA, 2022 | 15 | Cinema | Sony Pictures Releasing | Dir. Olivia Newman | Daisy Edgar-Jones, Taylor John Smith, Harris Dickinson, David Strathairn, Michael Hyatt, Sterling Macer Jr., Garrett Dillahunt
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