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Disappearance at Lake Elrod
Through the Glass Darkly

USA 2020
produced by
Autumn Bailey, Carmella Casinelli, Lauren Fash, Susan Graham, Bob Shapiro, Sharon Posluszny (executive), Terrence Posluszny (executive), Jim Rine (executive), Jeremy Kucharek (executive), Victoria Fash (executive), Mitch Lin (executive), Stacey Davis (executive), Chris LeDoux (executive) for However Productions, Acedog Films, Autumn Bailey Entertainment, Bon Aire Productions
directed by Lauren Fash
starring Robyn Lively, Shanola Hampton, Michael Trucco, Judith Ivey, Bethany Anne Lind, Stan Houston, Kinsley Isla Dillon, Cece King, Kerry Cahill, Hamilton Sage, Vince Foster, Cece Kelly, Katrina Norman, Susan Graham, Joy Jacobson, Kristi Taylor, Andrew Masset, Zoe Myers, Nicholas Logan, Caleb McCoy, Alicia Davis Johnson
written by Lauren Fash, Susan Graham, music by Stephen Webster

review by
Mike Haberfelner

A small town in the US-American South: Charlie's (Robyn Lively) daughter Lily (Kinsley Isla Dillon) has gone missing long enough ago for everyone else to give up hope that she'll ever turn up again, everyone but Charlie herself. Then another girl, Elodie (Cece Kelly), goes missing under somewhat similar circumstances, and Charlie's shocked that the local Sheriff (Stan Houston) handles the two stories as totally separate cases. But what's more, the Sheriff eventually suspects her to have something to do with the girl's disappearance. And once the Sheriff suspects it, it's only a matter of time until others do as well, since she's an open lesbian in a backwards town - even though her girlfriend (Bethany Anne Lind) has recently left her - and annoys the heck out of everybody inquiring about her missing daughter. Then though she stumbles upon Amy (Shanola Hampton), a reporter who doesn't believe Charlie's involved with Elodie's disappearance and sees connections between Elodie and Lily's case - and she offers to help, even if it's just to get the story. With Amy's help, Charlie stirs up the dirt in her hometown, and soon it becomes clear all leads lead back to Elodie's own father, Trip Carmichael (Michael Trucco), a local bad boy who's under protection of his own mother (Judith Ivey), who comes from old money and pretty much owns the town. The case almost seems open and shut, but then Amy has to notice that for some medical reason Charlie's claims might not be as waterproof as they first seemed, and consequently maybe they are messing with literally the wrong people here, with still a high price to pay ...

 

A really nice piece of thriller of the small Southern town variety that might feature all the elements one might have come to expect from that still somewhat obscure subgenre, but puts them together in a very original way, with the twist taking us into the third act coming out of nowhere (while making lots of sense in hindsight) and giving the film a wonderful new dynamic. Plus, the movie's also creepy as heck thanks to subtle yet atmospheric filmmaking that's mostly free of spectacle, while a competent cast carries the thing beautifully, making it very nice genre entertainment.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
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WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
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written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
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out now on DVD