The first Dark Places trailer has gone online and it’s been sort of a long time coming since the film wrapped principal photography some time ago. The film, based off the novel by Gone Girl author Gillian Flynn, stars Charlize Theron as Libby Day, a woman who, at the age of 7, survives the massacre of her family and testifies against her brother as the murderer. Years later, when confronted by a group obsessed with solving notorious crimes, Libby is forced to confront the truth about what she saw—or didn’t see.
Having read the book, the trailer indicates that this will be a fairly faithful adaptation. There are a lot of flashbacks in the novel, to the point where I think it would be distracting if they are intermittently rendered in black and white as they are in this teaser. Funnily enough, I liked this book a little bit more than Gone Girl after I first read it. But a second read of Gone Girl showed it to be a much richer thematic work (with more insight and humor). Now I wonder how a second read of Dark Places would fare. It’s easily more violent and stark, but I wonder if there’s as much left after that.
Check out the trailer below. The film was directed by Gilles Paquet-Brenner and opens in France on April 8th (no word of a U.S. release date yet), and also stars Nicholas Hoult, Chloë Grace Moretz, Corey Stoll, Christina Hendricks, and Drea de Matteo.
Here’s the official synopsis for Flynn’s novel:
Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in “The Satan Sacrifice of Kinnakee, Kansas.” As her family lay dying, little Libby fled their tiny farmhouse into the freezing January snow. She lost some fingers and toes, but she survived–and famously testified that her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, Ben sits in prison, and troubled Libby lives off the dregs of a trust created by well-wishers who’ve long forgotten her.
The Kill Club is a macabre secret society obsessed with notorious crimes. When they locate Libby and pump her for details–proof they hope may free Ben–Libby hatches a plan to profit off her tragic history. For a fee, she’ll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club… and maybe she’ll admit her testimony wasn’t so solid after all.
As Libby’s search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the narrative flashes back to January 2, 1985. The events of that day are relayed through the eyes of Libby’s doomed family members–including Ben, a loner whose rage over his shiftless father and their failing farm have driven him into a disturbing friendship with the new girl in town. Piece by piece, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started–on the run from a killer.