Ben Affleck’s directorial debut is a powerful film featuring a story that is difficult to watch, and provides the viewer with many ethical questions that are truly left ambiguous.
Patrick Kenzie (Casey Affleck) and his girlfriend Angie (Michelle Monaghan) were private detectives who are hired to assist the police investigation by the aunt of a missing 4-year old girl. Patrick was well known in the Boston neighborhood so the aunt thought he could go places where the police couldn’t go. They joined up with the investigating officers Remy (Ed Harris) and Nick (John Ashton) and they followed the case through many unexpected twists.
The story was well told and the characters were very deeply developed. You felt the pain and the guilt Patrick felt as the case took what seemed to be negative turns and you wanted everything to turn out alright.
Whether everything does turn out right at the end of the movie is left up to personal opinion in a unexpected way.
This is an amazing debut in the director’s chair for Ben Affleck. There are many shots it the film that create emotions within the viewer and he takes a case that should be obvious what the best thing to do is, and makes you uncertain about what the right thing is.
Casey Affleck was strong in the film, and I found to be on his moral train. There are other good to great performances from Ed Harris, Morgan Freeman and Amy Ryan. Amy Ryan in particular showed a downright rotten side to the character of Helene McCreedy, the mother of the missing girl.
The film is an adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s novel of the same name and Affleck does the source material proud.