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The Stranger (Thomas W. Wright, 2022) aka The Unknown Man; wr. Thomas W. Wright, prod. See-Saw: Emile Sherman, Iain Canning, Rachel Gardner; Joel Edgerton, Sean Harris, Ewen Leslie, Jada Alberts; crime; based on Daniel Morcombe story
There was no second album syndrome in Thomas M Wright’s follow-up to his enthralling directorial debut Acute Misfortune, moving from biopic (of artist Adam Cullen) into a darkly sophisticated crime drama. Joel Edgerton’s brooding undercover cop Mark is posing as a mid-level gangster and suspects an ex-con, Henry (played by a supremely unsettling Sean Harris) is responsible for the kidnap and murder of a missing boy. The joints of this heavy and moody picture swell under its own, intensely melancholic weight. It sounds like a tough watch, but The Stranger’s sheer style and bravado make it broadly appealing, as its success on Netflix seems to have demonstrated. The Guardian.
Stylishly made, with darkly elegant cinematography and editing, The Stranger is a compelling contemplation of trauma—not of the victim’s (which is fairly common in films) but the trauma experienced by Joel Edgerton’s cop Mark, who is deep undercover.
Slatter, Sean 2022, ‘It was a very difficult film to make’: Thomas M Wright on the sustained tension of ‘The Stranger’, IF.
Wikipedia page for Daniel Morcombe.
Garry Gillard | New: 7 October, 2022 | Now: 11 January, 2023