The Keeping Room (2014) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Daniel Barber
Starring: Brit Marling, Hailee Steinfeld, Sam Worthington
Rated: R/Region A/1:85/1080p/Number of Discs 1
Available from Cinedigm
Left without men in the dying days of the American Civil War, three Southern women – two sisters and one African-American slave – must fight to defend their home and themselves from two rogue soldiers who have broken off from the fast-approaching Union Army.
There is a lot of tension to be found in The Keeping Room, but it may take a movie watcher with just a little bit of patience to truly appreciate the direction things go in and the transition time for that. The film opens up about as well as anyone could hope for, with a very violent opening introducing us to our two union solders and showing us just how dangerous they are. From there we are introduced to Augusta who is our leading lady, also taking care of her sister with her slave friend, who she doesn’t really treat like a slave. Things happen and Augusta goes to town where she runs into our bad guys, which leads to basically one falling in love with her at first sight, which in return find a way into turnings into a movie that has a lot of shades of stuff like Straw Dogs. The tension gets high once we reach that part, but as I said above, some people who don’t like waiting through the build could find issues there. I on the other hand did not have a problem with it, because I found the story to be strong enough and I found the dread that hangs over the film from the opening scene alone to be enough to keep me interested.
This movie has a lot going for it, the casting is very well done, and to be honest with you guys, you’ll find a heck of a mean and violent streak in it as well. I’ll bring up Straw Dogs again, because I see a lot of people do so after seeing this, but it really does seem like a role reverse of sorts with that one. I think they even mention something here about protecting the house! Again, I have no issue there, just saying. The Keeping Room is just an overall solid film that does what it needs to and builds up a good relationship between the characters, even between the good and bad ones. You could go as far as to call the whole thing a very twisted love story in some ways, but maybe we shouldn’t go THAT far? A few minor logical missteps here and there by our characters aside, you should like this one if you like moody movies that can be very violent, but can also work the tension side of things well.
– The Making of THE KEEPING ROOM
– Commentary With Actress Brit Marling and Screenwriter Julia Hart
Quality of Transfer: 98%