• Review: Dig Two Graves (2017)

    From Mark R. Leeper@21:1/5 to All on Wed Mar 22 14:51:05 2017
    (a film review by Mark R. Leeper)

    CAPSULE: Teenager Jake is wracked with guilt about
    her part in the accidental death of her brother Sean.
    She believes she would do just about anything to get
    him back. Then three mysterious figures appear to
    her with an offer to restore her brother back to
    being alive. But for this seemingly impossible
    service they want to exact a price. DIG TWO GRAVES
    was written and directed by Hunter Adams, based on
    his own story. His film is moody and affecting, but
    less than totally coherent, and the style of the film
    puts too many obstacles in the viewer's path. Rating:
    +1 (-4 to +4) or 6/10

    DIG TWO GRAVES is set in 1977, though it flashes back to events of
    1947. Samantha Isler plays Jake, a teenager living in a rough
    mountain community. Jake has a heavy weight crushing her
    emotionally. She had wanted proof she was brave enough to jump off
    the side of a quarry into the water below. Her older brother had
    offered to dive with her. She goes with him but in the last
    instant lets go of his hand. She stands on the edge while her
    brother drops into the water never to be heard from again. Now
    Jake blames herself for her brother Sean's death. She knows there
    is nothing she can do to bring back Sean. But then she talks to
    three men, strange on several levels, who claim they can bring the
    dead boy back to life. They inform her, "He is not really dead.
    He is just hard to find." Jake has to decide if she can trust
    these men to deliver. Trying to give Jake support is her
    grandfather (in a strong performance by Ted Levine, who played the kidnapper/killer in THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS), now the local
    sheriff and whom the flashbacks tell us might know more than a
    little about the current events.

    This is a film with a strong sense of setting location, though it
    is not clear what the location is. It takes place in hill country
    of someplace in the Midwest. If it helps locate the setting the
    film was shot in Marion, Illinois. And perhaps it borrowed some of
    its texture from WINTER'S BONE.

    One problem for the viewer is that it is very hard to pick up on
    what is going on. That is partially intended from the story. But
    much of the dialog is spoken with a Hill Country accent that is
    hard to penetrate. To make matters worse, most of the film,
    particularly the early parts when the characters are introduced
    take place in the night without too much lighting. A few people
    discuss the situation and they look a lot alike. We seem to meet
    mostly men in full beards. Perhaps the best feature of the film is
    the moody camerawork by Eric Maddison, catching the haunting

    I rate DIG TWO GRAVES a +1 on the -4 to +4 scale or 6/10. DIG TWO
    GRAVES will get a release in theaters & on demand 3/24.

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    Mark R. Leeper
    Copyright 2017 Mark R. Leeper

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