“The Drowning” isn’t an erotic thriller. It’s a movie built on chance and how that intertwines two lives. Josh Charles plays a psychiatrist who testified against an 11 year old murderer years ago. His testimony put the kid away, but now the kid is an adult and pretty suicidal. Charles saves the guy from killing himself, but then puts two and two together. The kid recognizes Charles too and that sets the film down a moody path. It’s so moody that the film plays mood Jazz while the characters contemplate their moods.

I hate to be the one to say it, but Julia Stiles was kinda wasted in the film. She does the best with what’s there, but she disappears for large chunks of the movie. Where the film succeeds is in watching Josh Charles slowly decide what he has to do with the murderer returned to his life. Watching a man of science, a man of good will slowly succumb to base desire is amazing. What is it with me loving movies where people go primal? I think it’s more a statement of honesty, rather than mental breaking. Do with that what you will, but I enjoyed the film.


  • Not Rated
  • 1 hr and 35 mins
  • Paladin


  • 93%
    Film Score - 93%

The Plot Thus Far

The fourth film from Bette Gordon (VARIETY, LUMINOUS MOTION), and based on the acclaimed book by Pat Barker, THE DROWNING tells the story of a forensic psychologist haunted by his expert witness testimony that sent a young boy to prison for a chilling murder. When the boy later reappears in his life, he is drawn into a destructive, soul-searching reinvestigation of the case.

A psychological, erotic thriller, THE DROWNING celebrates the genre with electrifying performances and a complex, riveting story of shifting identities that will keep audiences guessing until the very end.


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