This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Ricardo Franco’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
I can see how this could be an interesting book, but as a movie its a banal melodrama with no tension, little conflict, and the least compelling murder trial ever put to film.
My wife just read this book and loved it, but she too found the movie unbelievably dull.
The biggest problem is how its structured.
Its flashbacks intercut with a trial and then an epilogue and all of it feel inconsequential. You could make this movie 20 minutes long and still convey the things this movie feels the need to spend hours on.
The murder trial is a joke because the prosecution’s case is beyond flimsy. You never think Kya is in any danger of actually being convicted, and since the shell reveal is left for the very end, we don’t see Kya’s backstory as an exploration of why she did what she did, we just see it as random anecdotes.
“Kya’s dad is an alcoholic” Ok, and? Like are we going to do something with that information or are you just letting us know? Thanks for the into I guess? This is how every flashback feels because we don't know why they matter until theres 2.5 seconds left in the movie.
The direction and cinematography are competent and the performances range from solid, to very good in Daisy Edgar-Jones case. So it really must be a really poorly structured script that made this movie so unbelievably dull.
If you’re a fan of the book maybe you’ll enjoy this more, as you have a deeper understanding of the world and the characters interior monologue, but for a newb, I thought this was a dull chore that makes any Nicholas Sparks adaptation seem like a cinematic masterpiece.