Writer Chris Lang isn't set on what sort of detective Will is. He’s willing to break the law to get what he wants, but does nothing overly offensive. He loves his sister Juliette (Charlotte Riley) – who’s abused by her boyfriend Paulo (Edward Akrout), and he's fine with punching his face in, but doesn't declare a threat.
Is he a drunk? Mildly: he's often holding a beer, but nothing stronger. Is he angry? Well, he loses it with Juliette then immediately apologises. Is he traumatised? Certainly, but never flies too far off the handle. It’s hard to know if Lang meant him to be a fatally contradictory character – what’s obvious is that it doesn’t work.
Charlotte Riley as Juliette
But hey ho – given the lack of character, and the lack of much personality from the characters around him, surely the plot will shine through? Lang does create an engaging story, fun in a bleak sort of way, but much of the script is clouded in a boring fug. Although the murders are brutal, they’re not nearly as gruesome as the tone promises. And, despite some stirring monologues from child abuse victims, the number of police interviews is excessive, the emotion waning after every revelation.
Dark Heart has a decent premise, but it’s not enticing enough – you are left firmly and unambiguously in your seat. It’s clearly reaching for a Luther vibe, mildly succeeding in its visuals with director Colin Teague and cinematographer Sam McCurdy creating a sickly yellow, Fincher-like atmosphere. But Lang’s script is often tedious and a bit predictable, and in this age where detective thrillers are everywhere, Dark Heart offers nothing new.
|What||Dark Heart episode 1 & 2 review|
On 31 Oct 18, 9:00 PM – 10:00 PM
On 01 Nov 18, 9:00 PM – 10:00 PM