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When a photographer (Abbie Cornish) in a failing marriage suffers severe memory loss after a traumatic accident, strange clues among her photos suggest she may be responsible for the deaths of family members she never knew she had.

Courtesy of Red Eye

1.5 out of 4 stars

Title
Lavender
Written by
Ed Gass-Donnelly and Colin Frizzell
Directed by
Ed Gass-Donnelly
Starring
Dermot Mulroney, Abbie Cornish and Justin Long
Genre
Drama
Classification
PG
Country
Canada/USA
Language
English
Year
2016

Filmmakers, listen up: It's time to retire that ominous-low-rumble sound you use to create suspense in would-be thrillers.

You know the one. It sounds like a subway crossed with a bass drum and some lightly shaken sheet metal. You use it when someone is peering down a dim hallway, or turning a rusty key, or walking trance-like into a rustling cornfield. In Lavender, which leaves no cliché unturned, it's used for all three.

Thirty years ago, when Jane (Abbie Cornish) was a tot, her family was slaughtered, but she can't remember how. Now she's a married mother who photographs abandoned houses, without knowing why. (That's the level of psychological mystery we're dealing with here.)

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After a car accident "aggravates an old skull fracture trauma," Jane returns to the family-death-farmhouse, where she takes way too long to figure out the incredibly obvious person responsible. Creepy packages arrive: RUMBLE. Jane goes into fugue states: RUMBLE. A scary little girl appears in visions: RUMBLE. Jane pours cereal: RUMBLE. The subway should be so reliable.

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