Movie review: The Secrets We Keep
As the iconic Lisbeth Salander in the original The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo films, Noomi Rapace proved she could ace the combination of vulnerable victim and avenging angel.
In The Secrets We Keep, the goth sensibility is replaced with a 1950s vintage wardrobe, but underneath both veneers lies a similar thread of unspeakable abuse.
In post-World War II America, a troubled Romanian housewife (Rapace) who is rebuilding her life in the suburbs with her husband (Chris Messina) kidnaps and tortures her bewildered new neighbour (Joel Kinnaman), believing he is the Nazi soldier who raped and brutalised her 15 years prior during the war and was also responsible for killing her sister.
This taut, suspenseful drama reels you in from the get-go and mostly holds your attention due to the central mystery: Is her memory reliable, or is she just emotionally unstable? And is he innocent or guilty?
However, the ending, though not predictable, is executed so abruptly and cleaned up so tidily that it has the effect of almost undoing all the build-up that came before.