The Secrets We Keep Poster

The Secrets We Keep (2020)

Drama  
Rayting:   5.6/10
Country: USA
Language: English

In post WWII America, a woman, rebuilding her life in the suburbs with her husband, kidnaps her neighbor and seeks vengeance for the heinous war crimes she believes he committed against her.

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El_Guapo_Caballo 20 September 2020

Having watched THE SECRETS WE KEEP, almost inmediatly I googled film critics opinion about this movie hoping to not be the only viewer surprised by the obvious plot similarities between the movie in question and DEATH AND THE MAIDEN. I didnt have to search much, several film critics allude directly to both movies blatant parallelisms. Here´s a direct quote from THE WRAP´S film critic Alonso Duralde;

¨The worst sin of "The Secrets We Keep" is not that it so blatantly and flagrantly rips off Ariel Dorfman's play and subsequent movie "Death and the Maiden" - although if the Chilean author wanted to sue for a credit, he's certainly got a case.

The history of art is the history of creators borrowing from each other, whether they call it homage or reference or appropriation. What grates about director Yuval Adler and his co-writer Ryan Covington pilfering so obviously from Dorfman's work is that they haven't done anything particularly interesting with it.¨

I wont comment about the quality of the technical aspects of THE SECRET WE KEEP, I´d like to focus on the plot, recently we had a simmilar case between Guiilermo Del Toro´s THE SHAPE OF WATER and LET ME HEAR YOU WHISPER by Paul Zindel.

David Zindel, son of playwright Paul Zindel, brought copyright infringement claims against the creators of the film The Shape of Water, the winner of the 2018 Academy Award for Best Picture, alleging that The Shape of Water infringed the copyright to his father's 1969 play Let Me Hear You Whisper.

The district court granted defendants' motion to dismiss on the grounds that the parties' works are not substantially similar as matter of law, upon application of the Ninth Circuit's "extrinsic test" for determining substantial similarity.

The Ninth Circuit reversed, holding that the district court erred in dismissing the case at the pleading stage because "reasonable minds could differ on whether there is substantial similarity between Let Me Hear You Whisper and The Shape of Water," such that additional evidence, including expert testimony, could "aid in the objective literary analysis needed to determine the extent and qualitative importance of the similarities" between the two works and "whether any similarities are mere unprotectable literary tropes or scènes à faire."

If you as a screenwriter or director are inspired so much by a previous work of art that you have the intent to make your own personal version of such work, why not buy the rights or mention ´inspired by´ in the credits of your film, is it so hard? especially when you have the backing of powerful Hollywood studios like Fox Searchlight Pictures in the case of Del Toro´s film, or AGC Studios, Di Bonaventura Pictures, Echo Lake Entertainment in the case of Adler and Covington´s movie in question. Its not only common courtesy but a show of respect for the writers and filmmakers that came before and inspired you.

Dorfman the playwright of Death and The Maiden is almost 80 years old, Polanski is bordering 90, I dont believe that they have the time or energy to pursue a lenghtly and costly court case, one would hope that the young Israeli authors of a film that aspires to tell a story about universal justice would have been more sincere to such commitment.

I apologize for my horrible english. Good evening. And watch DEATH AND THE MAIDEN if you havent already, Its not only a marvelous film, but a true original.

dnw-37 17 October 2020

Death and the Maiden has a very similar script but keeps the viewer guessing for longer whose side to take. The Secrets We Keep is nowhere near as well scripted, or emotionally, as engaging. And although I like Noomi, Sigourney Weaver is just incomparable. Acting, directing, writing - D&M is superior in all aspects. Skip this one and watch D&M instead!

jamactechnical 21 October 2020

...and period dramas set in the 50's, I recommend it. If you don't expect too much and just enjoy it for what it is...nothing special but I still enjoyed it even though I have seen better films like it. A decent 6 stars but 7 for the actress.

STEVE24BUS 25 October 2020

This is an enjoyable thriller. Fairly original storyline and good performances from the three leads who take around 80% of the screen time. Slow paced, and it has to be for the story to unfold, some unpleasant scenes, which again are needed. I would have marked the film 8 if not for the very predictable last scene before the epilogue, still a good thriller though.

N.B I haven't seen 'Death And The Maiden' which comparisons are made in other reviews so my review is unbiased and about this film.

ops-52535 10 October 2020

Is my first thought, and the way this story is told are less than average good, its a zombie like production over the ghosts from the past. the plotspeend goes from turtlish to rabbit speed and there are large plotholes, there are too many questionable and incoherent transitions, and as a result of bad directing the actors are never given a chance to surprise or flourish.i felt that the whole line of cast seemed utterly uninspired in their acting, and if this was in a upper middleclass neighbourhood in the late 50's, the general view on life in usa were a lot brighter than this film illustrates.

so noomi rapace does not impress here and neither will the general audience, except those who will have or needs the revenge to be able to breath. i the grumpy old man have my c-pap to survive the mess of day/-and night mares, so i will survive to tell its not much, just a very small recommend

nonsensefans 17 October 2020

I enjoy this kinda plot twist, tortured movie genre similar to Misery, Death & the Maiden.. etc.. But this one feels a bit lacking and could be much better if they add more intense /blowing mind scene .. The cast are already good, really loves Joel Kinnaman cause all the movies he does was great.. I give 9/10 to help with the ratings..

cruise01 29 October 2020

3 out of 5 stars.

The Secrets We Keep is a fair thriller film about Maja (Noomi Rapace) who comes across someone familiar Thomas (Joel Kinnaman) who from the past. Her and her sister were with other girls who escapes a nazis camp. While apparently Thomas and his men caught them and did horrible things to her and other girls. In the present, Maja captures Thomas and has him held up in her basement. While trying to convince her husband Lewis (Chris Messina) that he is who she says he is. While they try to get him to confess.

A decent plot. Great performances by Noomi Rapace and Chris Messina. And Joel Kinnaman all did good. It does put you on the edge of your seat as Maja and Lewis have a few close calls when neighbors question screaming at night when Thomas almost escaped them. Or when Maja talks with Thomas wife about his perspective of the life story.

The direction is a slow pace though. Where it can be boring with the exposition of Maja telling herself she is sure she knows he is the guy from her past.

It was decent thriller that delivers on performances and keep you on the edge but decent story and direction.

athies 9 November 2020

It is stranger and stranger when I see movies with smoking.

Is he going to notice?

That was sudden! I thought this was a recon mission.

Now we get into it.

What is the point of "coward"?

Unfinished basement

I don't think I could sleep in that situation.

It's going to be Wednesday pretty soon correct?

At least his face is sanitized.

She seems rather casual after several days.

There walks by a helpful citizen.

How the hell is this going to end?

That is too shallow.

You can't stay there, but you can't leave.

cjaymet 24 November 2020

Oof what a polished turd this movie was. And really the only thing that seemed polished about it is it's 50's setting which only lends a veneer proficiency.

In post-World War II America, a Romanian woman, Maja, living in the suburbs with her husband, kidnaps her neighbor and seeks vengeance for the heinous war crimes she believes he committed against her. She recounts a night during the war when she and her gypsy family were assaulted by a group of German soldiers, one of whom she believes is her captured neighbor, Thomas. Her husband, Lewis, is torn by his Maja's claims especially as the more he looks into Thomas's past the more innocent he appears.

So we have a female lead who holds a man captive for the remainder of the film for supposed wrongs he's done. So this is basically a post-WWII version of Hard Candy and many of the problems I had with that movie are present here as well. The biggest being that there is no significant power shift throughout the film. She has this man subdued at the 20 minute mark and he remains captured for the entire film. Why do movies keep thinking you can make feature-length film from a captors point of view? Aside from being without any real threat, it's only possible if you needlessly drag the movie out. This movie accomplishes that by constantly cutting from them holding this man hostage to them going about there daily lives. It's honestly laughable every time it shifts to them getting in bed, talking to neighbors, or doing household chores, as if they don't currently have a man tied up in their basement. Also like Hard Candy, we're treated to a scene where the female lead is having to hide her captive from prying eyes and I'm once again kind of hoping she'll get caught. A lot of that is because I'm never given much of a reason to believe Maja's assertion. Blindly kidnapping a man she claims to recognize from 15 years prior is crazy enough but Thomas keeps providing evidence that appears to clear him of these accusations. So why should I side with Maja?

I at one point I wondered whether this film was planning a subversion of expectations. I mean, here's this man who we have no reason to believe is guilty, that this woman is detaining claiming him to be the holder of all her ill-will. It started to remind me of Hitler's own assertion to his party that the Jewish people were to blame for their problems because they'd taken what was rightfully theirs. I thought that maybe in the film's final moments Maja would come to the horrible realization that she's become the very thing she feared and now she's continuing the cycle of hatred.

Instead the climax suffers from a bad case of "Because the Script Said So" Syndrome in a clumsy way to make movie's events look worthwhile but it REALLY doesn't work. This is further highlighted by the fact that the movie's climax happens in the same set up we were at 20 minutes into the running time. The movie's events should not have been dragged out this much and the writers clearly didn't know how to lengthen it. The dozens of times she prepares to kill him and then stops just had me screaming at the screen "Either kill him or let him go but stop dragging it out!"

I can't even recall much else filmmaking-wise. The horrible plotting is enough to overshadow any competent performances, camera work, or score. It's a dower, unpleasant trudge. A better title would have been The Film We Keep Secret. Seriously, bu

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