#REVIEW: “EVERYBODY KNOWS”
Review by Amanda Gilmore for Mr. Will Wong
Laura (Penélope Cruz) travels from Argentina to Spain with her two children to attend a family wedding. While everyone is at the wedding reception Laura goes to check on her children and notices her teenage daughter is missing. The following day she receives a text message demanding a ransom for the return of her daughter. In the quest to get her daughter back a dark web of hidden family secrets come to light.
Director-Writer Asghar Farhadi has crafted an enthralling Family Drama rich in mysterious characters. His steady direction creates a slow-burning Thriller that creeps up on the audience and leaves a lasting effect. His skillful writing results in constant surreptitious and divulging scenes that captivate and carry the Film to its final discovery. These scenes work due to Farhadi’s complex and fascinating Characters. Each of them beguilingly is brought to the screen by the impressive Cast.
Cruz’s Cannes Film Festival award-nominated performance is a marvel. She comes apart at the seams once the realization of her daughter’s abduction had been confirmed. Cruz’s authenticity when it comes to Laura’s discoveries and confessions makes this one of her many career-best performances. Javier Bardem, playing Laura’s prior teenage lover Paco, makes for a powerful scene partner next to Cruz. Bardem makes Paco’s internal moral struggles visual throughout the Film. The two of them together make for a magnetic force that anchor and carry the Film’s Plot from beginning to end.
Universal Pictures Canada releases EVERYBODY KNOWS on Friday, February 15, 2019.