The secrets In Their Eyes (Juan Jose Campanella. 2009)

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There’s something deeply compelling about this particular thriller. The mysterious murder case that Ricardo Darin’s Esposito investigates throughout the film offers a genuinely chilling premise, with gritty depictions of violence, murder, rape and corruption shocking and horrifying at points.

But what separates The Secrets In Their Eyes from most other thrillers is its clever subtext. crime is not the all encompassing theme of this story. Instead it is love, passion and intimacy. The victim’s lonely husband leaves us questioning what one does if one loses a loved one unjustly and the murder itself questions the audience as to what the difference between lust and love is. Furthermore, over the course of the 25 year long story, the investigators of the case Esposito and Menendez (Soledad Villamil) come to understand what it means to admit undying adoration to another and the pain that arrives from refusing to.

The camera moves elegantly throughout this chaos. The mirage quality of the first scene and the grand, swooping shots of the chase scene at the football match are two points of outstanding cinematography. It’s not laden with the hand held footage some thrillers think is so key. It’s much too clever for that.

What this is is a very mature, intelligent crime film. It’s one that doesn’t just deal with a crime and the subsequent solving of said crime – although the intrigue of the mystery is edge of the seat stuff. It’s not solely a grim plot about fear and suffering either. The Secrets In Their Eyes is a study of human emotions that continue even after someone has died. It’s about  love, hate, pain and pleasure.

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