Lost Girls (2020) Poster


User Reviews

Review this title
91 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
This movie brings back all the horrors of the Long Island Serial Killer
eileen-guthrie55514 March 2020
I very rarely write a review on IMDB this is my second review, but I felt compelled to write one because of my familiarity with this story as a former Long Island resident and was very familiar with the area where their bodies were discovered. The Long Island Serial Killer (aka LISK) still remains unknown to the Suffolk County police. There have been many suspects over the years. John Bittrolff was one of those accused in these murders. He was arrested, tried and convicted of three of the murders of Rita Tangredi, Colleen McNamee and Sandra Costilla. He is serving two life sentences plus an additional 25 years in Fishkill, NY. DNA that was found on these girl's bodies is what convicted him of these murders.

Joseph Brewer was the last person to have seen Shannan Gilbert alive. He hired her as an escort from Craigslist on the night of her disappearance. Brewer said that shortly after Gilbert arrived at his residence, she began acting erratically and fled into the night. Gilbert was reportedly seen running through Oak Beach, pounding on the doors of homes in Brewer's neighborhood. Around this time, Gilbert called 9-1-1 saying that "they were trying to kill her". However, police did not find any evidence of wrongdoing, and Brewer was quickly cleared as a suspect.

Dr. Peter Hackett was one creepy dude in my opinion, and he lied to the police when he said he never made a phone call twice to Mari Gilbert when phone records showed that he did. Why lie about something like that, that could be easily identified? The marshy area where Shannan Gilbert's remains were found were behind Hackett's house and backyard. Mari Gilbert filed a wrongful death suit against Hackett in November 2012, claiming that he took Gilbert into his home that morning and administered drugs to her, facilitating her death. Later police revealed that Hackett had a history of inserting himself into, or exaggerating his role in, certain major events. Police also noted that Hackett's wife and two children were home on the night of Gilbert's disappearance. Police later ruled out Hackett as a suspect in the deaths of Gilbert and the other LISK victims.

Now, one of the more interesting "suspects" was James Burke, the former Suffolk County Police Chief claimed he was connected to the Long Island murders. In November 2016, Burke had been sentenced to 46 months in federal prison, along with three years of supervised release, for beating a man who stole a duffel bag filled with sex toys and pornography from his vehicle. Burke had pleaded guilty in February 2016 to charges of a civil rights violation and conspiracy to obstruct justice. Gilbert's attorney said in December that one escort claimed that she had had "rough sex" with Burke during an Oak Beach party. Burke was reported to have blocked an FBI probe of the LISK case during his time as police chief. He has never been cleared as a "suspect."

The media has speculated about a profile of the killer, referred to by police as "Joe C" (unknown subject). According to the New York Times, it is most likely a white male in his mid-20s to mid-40s who is very familiar with the South Shore of Long Island and has access to burlap sacks, which he uses to hold the bodies for disposal. He may have a detailed knowledge of law enforcement techniques, and perhaps ties to law enforcement, which have thus far helped him avoid detection.

Shannan Gilbert's death was originally ruled as a drowning but due to the controversy about Gilbert's death, in September 2014, famed forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden agreed to conduct an independent autopsy of Gilbert's remains in hopes of determining a clear cause of death. Upon examination of Gilbert's remains, Baden found damage to her hyoid bone (the same bone in Jeffrey Epstein's case), suggesting that strangulation may have occurred. Baden also noted that her body was found face-up, which is not common for drowning victims. Despite this, her death is still officially listed by police as an accident.

The worse thing about these many deaths and bodies found was the lack of respond from the Suffolk County Police. Fourteen bodies were found and only 6 have been identified and because most of the victim minus the 24-month-old baby girl whose mother was identified as Jane Doe #3, were all prostitutes. Their bodies were dismembered and spread out along the south shore of Long Island because many had identifying marks such as scars from surgeries and tattoos. Because they lived a dangerous lifestyle their murders didn't matter to them and never took it seriously until Mari Gilbert came and made it important. She was unrelenting in her pursuit of justice for Shannan. Sadly, there are no happy endings in the Shannan and Mari Gilbert's stories. Mari was murdered by her youngest daughter Sarra, who suffered from schizophrenia and Shannan's murder remain unsolved.

The police didn't care enough to want to solve these brutal murders because they were prostitutes. I've seen enough real murder mysteries to know this is a pattern with most police. If a victim lived a dangerous lifestyle even runaways and were murdered, they probably deserved it and that just infuriates me.

This movie brings back all those horrors of the LISK into my mind. It was well acted by all involved but Amy Ryan was outstanding, and her performance brought out the quintessence of the real Mari Gilbert and her pursuit of justice for her oldest daughter Shannan. The actor who played Peter Haskell brought out his creepy vibe perfectly. He made my skin crawl just as the real man did.

EXCELLENT movie and I give it 9 out of ten. I would love to see a miniseries on the Long Island Serial Killer in the hopes of families who could identify the remains of the remaining 8 bodies.
72 out of 73 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Community Suspicion
pkdyer651913 March 2020
Excellent Netflix film based on real events, I don't say that very often. Dolby Vision and 4K has made viewing films like this a very realistic proposition which makes them more horrowing and thought provoking. Amy Ryan is magnificent as Mari a crusading mother trying to find out what happened to her estranged daughter Shannan, ably supported by her two daughters. Police only stumble across two bodies by mistake which takes her to a strange private community called Gilko Beach(The True Location). Gabriel Byrne plays Commissioner Dorman a cop whos at the twilight of his career, he forms a cat & dog relationship with Mari. Mari forms friendships with the mothers and daughters at a wake, where they try to seek justice. This won't be bettered this year for its realism and passion and superb acting. A Must See!
32 out of 34 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
A clearly passionate retelling of a woman's fight for answers and justice
jtindahouse13 March 2020
I stumbled upon 'Lost Girls' tonight on Netflix and thought it looked interesting so decided to give it a look. I wasn't aware of the story behind it and I wasn't aware that it was based on true events. The main thing you'll notice when watching this movie is that is has an agenda, and it pushes it very heavily - and I liked that because it was personal. When a film just picks an agenda and decides to shove it in your face, that's garbage. But that isn't what happened here. This movie has a reason to be anti-police based on the real-life happenings and it wants people to know that. I think it found a good balance between getting its point across and also making sure it didn't consume the movie.

If you asked people to list all the Oscar nominated actresses who appeared in 'The Office' I think a lot would forget to put Amy Ryan on their list. She is though and 'Lost Girls' is further proof that when she is given the material to work with she can act her backside off. Her performance means a lot to this movie because she is the driving force behind almost every scene. If she wasn't able to pull it off the movie would fail, simple as that. She is terrific.

If you don't know anything about the real-life events this is based on then this film works very well as a mystery-drama. If you do know about them then I would suggest you're still going to enjoy this film, just in a different way. Don't come in expecting action scenes and over-the-top drama thrown in for the sake of it. This is a low-key, understated film that just goes about its business and does so wonderfully well. I had a great time with this movie and I suggest you will too.
52 out of 58 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Nice Story Slow Screenplay
varun-2507199714 March 2020
A very important story but it should have been a documentary not a feature film.
35 out of 42 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Interesting Adaptation
nicholls905-280-54691113 March 2020
Firstly, this being a true crime storyline, it's refreshing for a character study. The book was a tough read, and the film is no different. Strong cast, and a film that can't provide any real closure for the viewer. Netflix should make more films based on true crime stories. Lost Girls is a sad story and more focus is not a bad thing.
35 out of 42 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Better than it's current rating of 5.9
Kjsaftner14 March 2020
This is the first review I have ever written because this movie deserved more credit than it was given. It was not perfect and some of the acting was clunky, while others were exceptional. You really feel the mothers energy throughout and can grasp the love that truly was there despite all of their familial shortcomings.

I am not sure how true this story was , but I hope the police were not this inept. I couldn't be sure if it was just over the top writing or not.

Overall, this was a good watch. Suspenseful with a decent enough cast.
17 out of 19 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Lost Girls - Movie Review
alexpitt-345-97169913 March 2020
I didn't really have any anticipation for Lost Girls, but I do enjoy murder mysteries and the synopsis for this film sounded interesting to me. In the end, I didn't think it was particularly great, but I still had a decent time watching it. The annoying part was, I could see the bones of a truly wonderful film buried in the sloppy storytelling.

The performances across the board were fantastic, and it was nice seeing Thomasin McKenzie in a film after her incredible performance in Jojo Rabbit last year. I don't think she was as good in Lost Girls, but that's mainly down to how good she was in Jojo Rabbit, and not really a negative against this film.

The direction by Liz Garbus was also impressive, and it boasted some nice camera work. The cinematography was kept dark throughout, but that worked for the tone they were going for.

I liked the story that Lost Girls was trying to tell, but the execution wasn't as strong as I would have liked it to be. The ending was completely predictable, and the pacing was off. Some parts felt rushed, whilst others dragged out for much longer than they needed to.

I also didn't find any of the characters to be fleshed out all that much, and so it was hard to care about their story. Obviously, because this is based on real events, I wanted it to pan out a certain way, but they should have developed the characters more. This would have allowed me to have a deeper attachment to the outcome within the film itself. An extra twenty minutes would have probably benefitted the film, because it clocks in at under 90 minutes without credits.

Overall, Lost Girls was a decent watch, but probably not one I will revisit again.

SCORE: 63%
23 out of 27 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Involving true story
cledakling13 March 2020
Since I watch a lot of murder mysteries this popped up on Netflix. Once it started I realized is was about the murders on Long Island. I knew a little, but nothing about the families involved.

The film does an excellent job of drawing you into the life of the mother who wouldn't settle for police indifference. There were details and an ending I never knew that adds to the heart break.
17 out of 21 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Intriguing Mystery
Pairic14 March 2020
Lost Girls: Based on the Long Island serial killings. The story centres around Mari Gilbert (Amy Ryan) mother of missing Sex Worker Shannan. Mari's relentless campaign forced the police chief (Gabriel Byrne) to conduct a search for her daughter and to seek the serial killer(s) responsible for killing up to 16 women. Best acting plaudits though go to Thomasin McKenzie as Sheree Gilbert. Reed Birney is suitably creepy as a suspect. Terrible incompetence and dereliction of duty by the police is revealed. Directed by Liz Garbus. 7/10. On Netflix.
14 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
More of a series event
gibbs-1817214 March 2020
A little bit too rushed and too indy for the topic in hand. Could have been a limited series when you concider the true nature of events and that more than one family was affected. A missed opportunity and not up to the quality i expect from Netflix
10 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Made for TV midday movie
lmrk570514 March 2020
This is based on a truly tragic story, however I found this movie incredibly boring. What could have been an interesting & poignant opportunity was reduced to a collection of midday moviesque cliches. There are some really fine actors in this including Gabriel Byrne & Miriam Shor, but even their performances are flat. Every character is either one dimensional, unlikable or flat. A real waste.
32 out of 47 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Slow but not unwatchable
philhemstock-1178215 March 2020
Yet another show based on a real event which highlights the ineptitude of law enforcement.

I feel for the real people this is based on. I just think they could have made the film adaption better
10 out of 13 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Good story not good translated
torben-2632815 March 2020
This could have been a very good and moving film because of the plot itself. Unfortunately the story was translated very poor and boring into this film.
8 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
mmthos13 March 2020
That's an old inadequate cliché', but this does such an outstanding job, the phrase has never been more justified in a clear, genuinely involving, sensitive, BRUTAL, exquisitely esthetic depiction. I smell OSCARS to say anymore is to dilute the impact of above statement, but I have to add this distraction until my review is long enough SPOILER ALERT; not for the squeamish, and mercifully doesn't ruin it with a feel good ending, other than they're finally relieved to know the worst. Long Island wetlands never looked more starkly beautiful and creepy. right down to the cinematographic rhythm of montage ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
11 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
An Above Average film based on true events
alindsay-al13 March 2020
With the Coronavirus leading to more and more films being delayed, it seems like streaming services such as Netflix will be the main source of watching new films and TV series. The new Netflix film Lost Girls came out today and I have had a chance to watch it and this is my review for it. The premise of the film sees a girl get kidnapped, after the police botch the investigation her mother leads the charge to get justice for her daughter and others like her. Main Character Amy Ryan plays the main character in this film and she does a really good job in the film, her character has so much pain and you follow her through this journey as she tries to get answers about what happened to her daughter. Her character has some issues about her and she isn't the most likeable person in the world but you totally understand where she is coming from and you see just how difficult it is for her character to go through the tough circumstances. Supporting Characters Thomasin Mckenzie from Jojo Rabbit is in this film and she does a good job in her role, she is one of the other daughters in the film and it is interesting seeing the way that she deals with the dissappearance compared to her mother. Gabriel Byrne plays the policeman in charge of the case and his character goes through quite a bit in the film, he clearly wants to do things by the book but understands where Ryan's character is coming from. He questions everything in the film and it allows his character to develop throughout and be more interesting then your average policeman. Though I felt all the other characters weren't that interesting and felt that they weren't as powerful as these other characters and some even felt a bit cliche and unrealistic for a film based on true events. Story The story is pretty tough to watch, as you clearly see a one woman mission to try and get answers, you go with her on the journey and you want to see her get answers in this film. However, I felt the pay off wasn't there in the movie, I know this film is based on true events so you can't change the ending but that means maybe it wasn't a story that should have been adapted. Also on another note, this film spoils its plot in the first minute and it took me out of the film and the ending.

Script The script has some really good dramatic dialogue, the biggest compliment I can give to it, is that it feels very real, it doesn't feel like something somebody wrote on a piece of paper. But I felt like the script didn't delve enough into certain aspects of the film and it leaves you wondering if there were certain aspects of the script that were cut out of the film.

Style The style of the film is very methodical in its pacing, it keeps you intrigued in what exactly is going to happen if you don't know the story and it made you support the protagonist in its quest. However, it is pretty slow, and I questioned what was the film trying to achieve and as mentioned the film either accidentally or on purpose basically gives away the ending in the first part of the film.

Overall Overall this film has an important story from real life and the film itself is interesting to a certain extent but overall I just thought it was okay and there wasn't anything that stood out. If you are interested in seeing a real story with a good lead performance then this will be a decent watch but you don't need to rush to watch it.
14 out of 24 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Why can't Netflix make a proper movie?
klemp014 March 2020
It's just like almost every other Netflix's attempt to make a movie. It might have been a story worth telling but with such flat acting performances why should anyone care? Not one single character actually made me interested. What is it with Netflix, as soon as they move on from shows or documentaries and try to make a movie, it usually ends up being another flop.
13 out of 22 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Inaccurate storytelling and unconvincing acting
arose82314 March 2020
If you do your research you will find that most of what is portrayed in the movie is simply untrue. The movie tries to make the police look completely uninterested which is not truthful and makes the mother look like the good guy (hint: in real life she's not the good guy). Also the weird and awkward acting made it very hard to be empathic toward any of the characters. Waste of time...
19 out of 36 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
johnfsg13 March 2020
Looking like it would be an eye opening film to talk about and deal with a very important issue in today's society but instead it became a MEN are crap, COPS are crap and oh yeah white men are crap.

Total let down and total sale out to the SJW crowd.
5 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Good drama based on a true story
dr_bonone4 April 2020
Interesting non pretentious dramatic thriller based on a true story. The acting is quite realistic and the scenarios remembered me the first season of true detective. Cinematography is great too. So, overall a great option to enjoy our lockdown days.
2 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
It's rather the story that takes you with, than the actual film making
ajmetal200114 March 2020
No doubt the story is very moving. I didn't know about it, as I'm not living in the US. But the actual film making is not that great. The entire film is cut from one scene to the other. The director has obviously tried to put too much information in one short film and it didn't work out well. Too many characters that gets introduced into the story out of nowhere and then disappear without any information about them at all.
3 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Good telling of a strong story
smith-c5714 March 2020
A good solid film, one of the better offerings from netflix in recent times, it's well acted, especially thomasin Mackenzie as the sister of the missing girl, she will surely win an oscar one day she is brilliant in every part she gets, the rest of the cast do a pretty good job as well, the script is a little clunky at times but it is a good solid watch
6 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Great film! Exposes how society is extremely fake and willingly ignorant to horrendous crimes!
TruthSeeker4Life14 March 2020
Warning: Spoilers
The movie is great! I thought it was excellent and I didn't want it to be over. From the first few seconds to the last few seconds I was intrigued the entire time! The acting was great along with the actors, the filming was great, the writing was great, and I think this film was amazing! A+

I cannot believe it was a true story! Its amazing how everyone likes to point the finger at someone else. The mother wasn't perfect, and by the end of the film, she seemed to realize it, and said she would start with herself when it came to responsibility, which means she was finally looking for truth, but its hard to blame a woman that was trying to raise a child while still a child!

Its amazing how cops like to degrade prostitutes, but ironically, prostitutes main customers are often cops! What does it say about people when they degrade prostitutes but have no issue have sex with them? It says they are projecting because they are clearly the sick ones because they take advantage of people who are suffering, sick, abused, and need help! Most prostitutes were molested and raped as children and young woman which is statistical fact! I am a clinical psychologist and know first hand how many women that are sex workers were raped or molested by their dad's and males in their family as CHILDREN! These women need help, and clearly the one in the film needed help, because she had a psychiatric disorder and was not right in her head!

The fact that the old man who she interviewed said she ran away when he said he called the cops to come help her says the cops were involved in this whole thing! If you noticed, when she walked into the Association center and they focused in on the group pictures of the cops suggests that the film makers, from their researching for the film, believe the coops were behind part of this, and probably used and had fun with these women while they kept them captive and eventually killed them. This was clearly not the work of ONE man but several, and the way the cops handled this, their clear cut desire to move on, the lost evidence and lack of care for obvious evidence, especially during this day and age, because this day and age all law enforcement know that everything is evidence, suggests that these cops helped kill this girl.

The reason this girls murderer was never found is because the cops were behind this and it was in a small town where a group of men, and possibly women, worked together to accomplish whatever sick and twisted desires they had! For all we know they could have had a secret society there and they used these sex workers as sex objects, sacrifices to Satan, or some very sick and twisted stuff, which is what the movie ever so subtly suggested!

If the cops didn't just brush this off and act like it wasn't a big deal then I wouldn't feel this way. The cops were so adamant about not searching for this girl and clearly did not want to find here suggests that they are complicit. Its one thing to not care so much, and to be lazy, but this is obviously more than that, and the cops CLEARLY did not want to find her!
5 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
real story real people
antonslapnik14 March 2020
Maybe us citisens dont want look them own faces perfect noir movie
5 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Dull crime drama that leaves it unresolved.
cruise0121 March 2020
Lost Girls (2 out of 5 stars).

Lost Girls is a dull crime drama film about Mari (Amy Ryan) after her oldest daughter goes missing. The police investigation stalls and goes nowhere. She goes on a search for her. While late investigations discovers bodies of prostitutes that went missing long ago and the urgency to find them was forgotten by the police.

The plot is frustrating and saddening. Especially with sex trafficking and girls going missing. The detectives and police urgency on investigating takes forever. Until they only find bodies. This being a true story is even saddening. The films plot is dull. The direction is slow and boring. The acting is wooden with Amy Ryan and the rest of the cast ensemble. The plot goes nowhere with Mari going on searching. While police does nothing. Besides focusing on Mari nonstop searching for her daughter.

Overall, Lost Girls is a bad film. The story is flat. The direction, acting, and script is wooden and tedious.
3 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Any twist ?!!!
fhadcod19 March 2020
Warning: Spoilers
Ok ok.. it seems that the writing is the main problem here.. good writing is like a base to any movie.. i know this is a real event.. but come on maaan .. I waited for something at the end to shock me .. nothing.. all are expected

The acting was ok in my opinion.. the message that they wanted to deliver.. is delivered !!!

Nothing more .. the problem is in the base .. which is the writing.
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews

Recently Viewed