Sunday, June 03, 2007


Today I saw Jindabyne, starring Laura Linney and Gabriel Byrne.

This is one of those films that will probably linger in my head for a while, but I'm not completely sure why.

The story tells of an already dysfunctional marriage between Claire (Linney) and Stewart (Byrne) that is disrupted further by a discovery Stewart and his friends make on a fishing trip. They find the body of a murdered woman and don't report it until the end of their stay at the river. This brings shame from the townspeople and anger from their partners as the crime gets investigated.

As the tale is based on a short story by Raymond Carver, I can see why they left many things a mystery, but I'm not sure it worked in this context.

What we do know is that Claire is Stewart's second wife, she left her husband once, her mother-in-law is a meddling nightmare, and their best friends apparently lost their adult daughter. We also know who the killer is and how he preyed upon his victim.

What we don't know is why Claire left Stewart (though all signs point to post-partum depression), how exactly their friend's daughter passed, why the killer kills and why the Irish Stewart and the American Claire are living in Australia in the first place.

As the film progresses, you think you may get the answers to some of these questions, but you don't. I guess that's the biggest problem I had with this film—too many stones left unturned.

But to call it boring wouldn't be fair.

The performances are good, the pace is fine and the subject matter is interesting, if not exciting.

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