Hannah Lee Baker is a bright teen girl trapped in the dark Southern underworld of violence and guns, meth labs and vicious biker gangs, and whose only refuge is chess. She lives with Amber, her older sister; and her uncle Donny, an addict. All live in fear of Uncle Frank Stinson, who runs the illegal family business with an iron fist, aided by his psychotic younger brother Bobby. Things change for the worse when Amber falls in love with Wild Bill, a meth trafficker who finds himself at war with Frank. Hannah realizes the only way to save her family is by cleverly scheming to pit one pawn against another in a cunning chess game.Written by
Despite popular belief, this film took exactly 8 days to film. See more »
Hannah Lee Baker:
The queen is quaint and quick conceit, which makes her walk which way she list. And roots spin up that lie in wait, to work her treason 'ere she wist. Her force is such against her foes, that whom she meets she over throws.
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I watched this film simply on the recommendation of a dear friend who knows I have a thing for elements of chess in a movie, either as supporting theme or a cameo, or as the centerpiece, if you will.
The script was good, and delivered and filmed well enough, though a bit too simplistic for me and I felt I knew where the story was going too easily. It felt like a diet movie. I wasn't about to gain any mental weight trying to decipher plot twists or subtle character alleys. That's not harsh, it's just how I saw it. Most of my attention was on the analogy of chess pieces to the unfolding plot of teenage girl against the wickedness all about her. In her own family! For the life of me, I spent the better part of the credits going back and forth trying to find the source of the chess "poem," but never got anything definitive other than the script.
And don't think you're going to SEE a lot of strategic chess scenes. You have to listen to the poem interwoven throughout for the saving grace.
I found the cinematography crisp, and enjoyed the opening landscapes with a darker tie-in further into the movie.
The music was good, and per the credits, mostly original too!
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