Stillwater movie poster
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Stillwater
Stillwater movie poster

Stillwater Movie Review

Now available on Blu-ray and DVD (Buy on Amazon)

In the underappreciated Stillwater, director Tom McCarthy pisses off Amanda Knox while depicting the devotion of one father and his attempts at a new life.

Other than having at its core a young woman imprisoned in a foreign country for committing a murder she claims she didn’t do, Stillwater is not at all about Amanda Knox and her less-than-ideal experiences overseas. Instead, it’s a starting point for a story about an American roughneck who discovers new life in Marseilles.

Matt Damon delivers a quietly superb performance, immersing himself an off-type character to the degree you forget you’re watching Matt Damon, even if his physical appearance is largely unchanged aside from a goatee and a camo baseball cap. He also has great chemistry with his unassuming costar Camille Cottin, who is also excellent.

Stillwater waffles between family drama and grounded vigilante thriller, with the former aspects more rewarding than the latter. But McCarthy’s story largely works end to end, even if it necessitates some abrupt and sobering moments in the final minutes that will leave you with mixed emotions.

Stillwater is worthy of more attention than it has received, though it’s blend of genres may not appeal to everyone.

Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.

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