A couple finds themselves determined to learn the truth behind a murder-suicide amongst their friends in this intriguing drama from writer-director Keoni Waxman.
Daniel Turner was once a loving husband and father in a small town. However, some news had rocked the town when it was revealed that Daniel had killed his wife Rachel and son Evan before heading to the local ravine and turning the gun on himself. The news travel fast within the town and it hits the hardest on Mitch and Carolyn Bianci, who were best friends with the Turners.
The couple decide to figure out why Daniel, someone they’ve known for so long, do such a shameless act. As Carolyn grieves over the death of her best friend Rachel, Mitch does some investigating. Through meeting up with others from Daniel’s past, Mitch becomes surprised to learn Daniel wasn’t once the man he once knew. He was known for his notorious temper until a botched robbery leading to a jail sentence became his chance at redemption for himself. As Mitch digs deeper, he still questions why Daniel did this and questions if he should forgive him.
A one-time staple of DTV action films, writer-director Keoni Waxman is best known for his collaborations with the likes of Steven Seagal and Michael Jai White. However, for his latest film, an adaptation of a novel based on true events in the life of author Robert Pascuzzi, Waxman goes a different route. It is a good thing too because this film gets to showcase Waxman as a versatile director.
The cast is great in this, especially Eric Dane and Teri Polo, whose characters of Mitch and Carolyn Bianci are based on the real-life Robert and Kelly Pascuzzi. While Polo spends the film grieving and questioning the matters involving the situation, Dane is the one who investigates by getting some clues and getting help from certain folks. This leads to a series of flashbacks in the eyes of supporting characters who reveal some shocking details about Daniel’s past. One happy flashback shows Daniel, played by Peter Facinelli, with Mitch and Carolyn at a barbecue where he thrives on his life now.
Leslie Uggams is the Macguffin of the film, a mysterious woman named Joanna. Joanna is somewhat of a clairvoyant and in their greatest time of need, helps Mitch and Carolyn solve the mystery surrounding the murder-suicide of Daniel and his family. Days of Our Lives’ Kyle Lowder plays Daniel’s suffering brother, who is one of a few people to reveal a shocking truth about Daniel, from the time they were teenagers who ended up getting in a bit of trouble. This is also where the victim, in a moment of forgiving Daniel for what had transpired, mentions an important character who convinces him to forgive Daniel.
The Ravine gives Keoni Waxman a chance to do something different from his usual array of action films in a positive way, with great performances by Eric Dane, Teri Polo, and Leslie Uggams.
WFG RATING: B+
Cinedigm presents a Hope Messenger Media production in association with Hollywood Media Bridge. Director: Keoni Waxman. Producers: Robert Pascuzzi, Kelly Pascuzzi, and Philip B. Goldfine. Writer: Keoni Waxman; based on the novel by Robert Pascuzzi. Cinematography: Nathan Wilson. Editing: Trevor Mirosh.
Cast: Eric Dane, Teri Polo, Peter Facinelli, Leslie Uggams, Byron Mann, Lucy Faust, Billy Slaughter, Kyle Lowder, Betsy Holt.
The film will be released in select theaters, On Demand, and Digital on May 6.