List Film

The Girl in the Park (3 stars)

(15) 110min (Halcyon DVD)

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The Girl in the Park

DRAMA

It’s easy to see why this quiet little film about a missing child was overlooked for glitzy Angelina Jolie weepy The Changeling on its first release. As Julia Sandburg, whose toddler was snatched from a park 16 years earlier, Sigourney Weaver has neither Jolie’s glamour nor her ability to look fetching in period costume. She’s brittle and empty, scorching the earth around her in her grief; and it’s an utterly mesmerising performance.

Kate Bosworth, as the drifter who may or may not be her daughter, is forced to up her game as a result, and they share an almost sexual chemistry. Alessandro Nivola, as Julia’s estranged son, is also excellent.

In fact, writer David Auburn, who also directs, doesn’t quite seem to know what to do with Weaver, and the script peters out rather shamefacedly in the closing scenes, all that menacing energy dissipated. Minimal extras.

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