Monday, October 26, 2015

Dark Places – Read the Book

Runtime: 113 minutes
Release Date: June 18, 2015
Rating: R
Director: Gilles Paquet-Brenner

Libby Day was just as a child when she lost her entire family. Her older brother Ben became the chief suspect and landed in prison for the murders of his mother and two younger sisters. Libby became an overnight sensation for her survival, landing on the covers of magazines and doing television appearances. She even wrote a best selling book and had a group of fans raise donations in the form of $1 million for her.

Years later, Libby is an adult and still trying to recover from the events of that night. After a meeting with her agent, she learns that all the money is nearly gone because she lived off it her entire life without working a single day. She gets a letter from a young man named Lyle who asks her to meet with his group one night. His group attempts to solve mysteries and loves serial killer crimes, and he can pay her for participating.

When Libby attends, she learns that many people believe that he brother is innocent of the crime. Many think it was her estranged POS father, while others think Libby herself is to blame because she named her brother as the killer. As Libby becomes caught up in the mystery surrounding what actually happened that night, she discovers that she knows less about her family than she ever believed.

After reading and watching Gone Girl, I downloaded Dark Places and read it in a single night. It was so good that I couldn't put it down, couldn't stop talking about it, and raved to everyone that it was so much better than Gone Girl. The twists that came at the end kept me gasping page after page, and I spent much of the book trying to figure out what happened. Sadly, Dark Places was nothing like the book.

The book did a great job of making you suspect every single character and keeping you guessing. Once it finally started wrapping up all its loose ends, it was like one amazing new piece of information every page. The movie takes too long to tie up those loose ends. You learn one piece of information, get another boring scene, learn something else, another boring scene, something new. I was so excited for my boyfriend to try and figure out the ending, but it took so long for us to learn everything that it wound up being a let down.

There were multiple things that both my roommate and my boyfriend didn't understand that I had to explain. It was like the screenwriter assumed that everyone who watched Dark Places read the book and would know what was coming. Other things were glossed over so quickly that it took awhile to remember what happened earlier in the movie.

While there was some good acting in the movie, it really didn't compare to Gone Girl. Charlize Theron gave Libby such a cool and calm attitude that it seemed like she didn't give a shit about anything that happened and that she never worried or felt any type of danger. It just gave me a cold feeling that made me want to go back and read the book.

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