The Lost Daughter (2021)

Title:  The Lost Daughter

Year:  2021

Genre:  Drama |

Runtime:  121 min

Director:  Maggie Gyllenhaal

Starring: Olivia Colman, Jessie Buckley, Dakota Johnson


A woman’s beach vacation takes a dark turn when she begins to confront the troubles of her past.


This film called The Lost Daughter gives an insight into a woman’s holiday that goes rogue.  It’s also Maggie Gyllenhaal’s first film ever. It’s not clear if she understood the task when taking the job. The leading role is played by Olivia Colman that gives an understated performance.

Olivia Colman is flawless as Leda. She has an array of emotions that are both surprising and tedious at one or the other point. She’s not remarkable enough to earn an Academy-Award nomination however she earned it anyway. In this film, her character is far more mysterious and quieter than she usually is.

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What’s revealed about her is small doses every now and then when she’s alone with flashbacks revealing an absent mother who doesn’t care for the two children. While on the island, she spends time a lot on the beach lonely. Why she does things is never explored or explained. It just showed a small piece of the bigger part. It’s lacking clues. But there’s still some tension.  There’s also Dakota Johnson as Nina who apparently is the daughter but never really informed to be it.

There’s a lot of stuff and incidents that happen. Colman’s Leda manipulates her guests and associates on the beach. It’s an apathetic mother to say at least. The characterization doesn’t uphold the plot at all. This is a movie about motherhood and the eternal struggle for a justified maternal responsibility.

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It’s a metaphorical story and something deeply embedded in being a parent. It’s not a boring film or a good film. Instead, you got a film that follows a script based on the book from Elena Ferrante, following the script rigorous. There’s no depth provided and the characters blend together. It’s a slow-burning film that tries to be more than what it really is. Even when the visual language grows, it pushes away from the enigma of the story and the character Leda.


Grade 2 of 5

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