Monday, October 15, 2012


By D.E.Levine

A NYFF50 Selection

In a departure from expected casting, director Len Daniels has cast normally happily-ever-after Matthew MacConaughey as  hard drinking Miami Times investigative reporter Ward Jansen; John Cusack as a former swamp dweller, Hillary Van Wetter who's on death row for killing a corrupt local sherrif; Nicole Kidman as Charlotte Bliss, a death row groupie who believes Van Wetter is innocent; and Zac Posen of Disney musical fame, as Jack, Ward's younger and directionless brother.

Jack is the paperboy who delivers the paper published by his and Ward's daddy, Scott Glenn.  Jack falls for Charlotte, an older woman who dresses lasiviously and exudes carnality on screen.

Ward, together with his black partner (David Oyelowo) investigate Van Wetter's case in an effort to dig up a sernsational story that might make their careers and win them a Pulitzer Prize.

While this film won't appeal to everyone, it is sexually and racially charged, taking viewers into the backwater swamps of Southern Florida.

Based on a best-selling novel by Peter Dexter, like an onion, Daniels peels back the layers of southern gentility to expose the evil that lurks beneath the surface in and around the town.