In 1969, reporter Ward Jansen (Matthew McConaughey) and his younger brother (Zac Efron) are investigating the background behind an upcoming execution, helped by a woman (Nicole Kidman) who’s fallen in love with the convict. The dark novel has fans, but the movie is more of a guilty pleasure. A steamy, dirty Southern tale with no surprises, told in a choppy and labored way. No tension, but plenty of atmosphere, and Kidman pulls out all stops as the kind of woman who’d date Jack the Ripper.
2012-U.S. 107 min. Color. Directed by Lee Daniels. Screenplay: Lee Daniels, Peter Dexter. Novel: Peter Dexter. Cast: Matthew McConaughey (Ward Jansen), Zac Efron (Jack Jansen), Nicole Kidman (Charlotte Bless), David Oyelowo, Macy Gray, John Cusack… Scott Glenn.
Trivia: Pedro Almodóvar was allegedly considered for directing duties; Tobey Maguire was also first cast as Ward.