A federal agent returns to his hometown in this Australian mystery thriller with some nice twists and turns.
Aaron Falk is a federal agent who has learned that his childhood best friend Luke has died along with his wife Karen and their son. Upon his return to his hometown, he is met with a very cold reception. On top of that, the townsfolk believe Luke had killed Karen and their son before taking his own life. Upon pressure from Luke’s parents, Aaron decides to stay and figure out what really happened.
Some of the locals are unhappy with Aaron because of an incident that happened two decades ago, the death of seventeen-year-old Ellie Deacon. Grant, one of the locals, insists that Aaron leave town. Meanwhile, Aaron meets local cop Greg Raco and together, they look into the case involving Luke and soon finds himself discovering a possible connection between his friend’s death and the 20-year death of Ellie. Will Aaron be able to find it or will the town he once lived in consume him forever?
Based on a book by Jane Harper, this Australian film is well-done and has a lot of tension and twists thrown in about a murder mystery that could be connected to a two-decade mystery with our protagonist caught in the middle. The tension comes in the form of a very cold reception for the character as very few welcome him back, but others make their statements and as a result, it becomes both a hindrance and a motivator.
This is Eric Bana’s best performance since his excellent turned as a racist Afrikaner prisoner in The Forgiven. As the embittered and determined Aaron, we see Bana play both investigator and concerned friend of the victim, we see him go through a series of flashbacks when he is 17 and we see the events that lead to Ellie’s death. While there are some who want Aaron to stay, including Luke’s parents played by the amazing Aussie vets Bruce Spence and Julia Blake, there are those who want to drive Aaron back out of town. The most notable of these guys is the town’s violent drunk Grant Dow, played by the Arrowverse’s Ra’s Al Ghul, Matt Nable.
Keir O’Donnell also churns out a great performance in the role of Greg Raco, the town’s local officer who reluctantly helps Aaron out on this mystery. Raco feels like a heroic cop who will go at all means to get the case solved, even if it affects his relationship with wife Rita. There are nice little twists within the story that make the viewer get involved in the case as much as the characters do. The big reveal leads to something jaw-dropping and ends with a shocking twist of its own.
The Dry is a very tense and exciting mystery that churns out one of Eric Bana’s best performances meshed in with some excellent twists and turns that make the viewer engage in the central case of the film.
WFG RATING: A
IFC Films and RLJE Films present a Screen Australia/Film Victoria Australia/Arenamedia production in association with Cornerstone, Media Super, Made Up Stories, and Pick Up Truck Pictures. Director: Robert Connolly. Producers: Robert Connolly, Eric Bana, Steve Hutensky, Jodi Matterson, and Bruna Papandrea. Writers: Harry Cripps and Robert Connolly; based on the book by Jane Harper. Cinematography: Stefan Duscio. Editing: Alexandre de Franceschi and Nick Meyers.
Cast: Eric Bana, Genevieve O’Reilly, Keir O’Donnell, John Polson, Julia Blake, Bruce Spence, William Zappa, Matt Nable, James Frecheville, Jeremy Lindsay Taylor, Joe Klocek, BeBe Bettencourt, Martin Dingle Wall.