Lost Girls Review: A Mother’s Search For Her Murdered Daughter
Movie Reviews

Lost Girls Review: A Mother’s Search For Her Murdered Daughter

Lost Girls Review: This Netflix film is rather average

  • Movie Name Lost Girls
  • Director Liz Garbus
  • Actor Amy Ryan, Thomasin McKenzie, Gabriel Byrne
  • Rating
  • Rating 2.5/5 Stars

Rating: ** ½ (two and a half stars)

Much of this true-life harrowing story of a distraught mother’s search for a daughter who goes missing  in Long Island, feels like documented evidence dipped and dried in pools of dehydrated melodrama. The plot as it uncovers the death of several young women buried in the hushed upper-class wealth of Long Island,  has the potential to knock our socks off. Tragically, as the law enforcement lets the mother down, this film too is not a really worthy look-see at a crime that shook America in 2010 when a young  woman Shannan Gilbert disappeared.

The cops’ antipathy apparently has to do with the missing girl being a sex worker. As a sardonic cop says, somewhere during the investigation that’s opened up by the persistent mother, “I’ve never seen  so much time being wasted on a hooker’s murder.” Right. Hookers are best buried and forgotten.

This means, in principle, that a woman who is not socially ‘up there’ deserves less justice than if a girl had disappeared from a normal  working class family. It is a shocking moral discrepancy and one that, I’m afraid, this film seems incapable of shouldering let alone resolving. What we see is a mother’s  relentless search for her daughter and how her other two daughters, especially the teenager Sherry (Thomasin Mackenzie who was so memorable as the Jewish girl in Jojo  Rabbit)  come to terms with the  fact that their missing sister was earning her  bucks for ….well you  know the  word that rhymes with shucks.

While director Lis Garbus does a commendable job of throwing light on an unpardonable crime cover-up, the treatment of the subject is often dry and pedantic. What could have been a haunting  experience for  viewers ends up as just  a reasonably stirring echo of a crime and reluctant  punishment that humanity must not forget.

The story deserved an epic treatment. All its gets is an emotionless sapped-out drama where the tensions are entirely controlled by the  principal actress Amy Ryan’s dramatic skills. Ms Ryan is just about adequate in bringing out the mother’s grief and determination. Admittedly it is not easy to feel any sympathy for a woman who lets her daughter earn though disrepute. No easy solution for life at the edges is provided in this drama of  blunt edges and sharp disappointments.

PS. This morning I read about a priest who died in prison after being sentenced for life  for murdering model 60 eras ago. When  is Netflix  doing this one?

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