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Where the Crawdads Sing; Grade: C+

Where the Crawdads Sing tells a story of a dead corpse found along the swamp in good ole North Carolina in 1969. A couple detectives assume that Kya Clark (Daisy Edgar-Jones) would be the main suspect, as Kya has been familiar with the dead corpse plus she’s pretty self efficient when it comes to the swamp as she’s known as The Marsh Girl. As the court case goes on, we’ll get to discover Kya as a young gal, teenager, and as a woman as well.

This film is based off an acclaimed novel written by Delia Owens which was released in 2018. I feel I’ve heard of that novel as the name felt familiar, I just have never read it or ever had friends who have read it themselves. This film is divided by critics and the audience, as the critics don’t care for it while the audience seems to really like it. I liked the whole poster design of the film, it brings a great amount of curiosity of what it can be about, due to the highlight of the poster featuring a large body of water. I can see why this film is divided amongst critics and the audience: I can see why people would like a film like this and not care for it, as I’m kind of in between.

While the story is set around a court case, it also is centered around a gal who has dealt with the hardships of life, mixed with a complicated romantic situation between two loves of her life. Kya’s life story is truly miraculous, as she really came from a tough life where family members flee from an abusive father figure. Kya wouldn’t have a normal childhood of going to school and having a stable household with a proper meal schedule, it was really living just a natural swamp lifestyle just riding along the waters of The Marsh. Then when her father left… Kya would have to carry on with her life, basically fending for herself. 

The whole journey of Kya’s life is the most engaging part of the story, as the way her story is told as a young gal fending for herself to establishing herself as a strong intelligent woman was thoroughly fascinating and of course inspiring as well even if it’s fictional. I liked the whole romance portion of this tale, I thought Kya and Tate’s (Taylor John Smith) love t’was sweet yet saddening all at once. It’s cute how Kya and Tate really have been acquainted with each other since they were kids, then all of a sudden blossomed when they become teenagers unexpectedly… Their love was extremely adorable to watch, yet with a very heart aching conclusion. 

The romance between Kya and Chase (Harrison Dickinson)... You can tell automatically he was trouble the moment he walked in. With Tate you knew exactly what not only a real man looks like, but when a man genuinely loves a woman looks like, say what you want about his unexpected departure but that man did adore and nurture Kya. As when we’re introduced to Chase… Just the way he goes about getting acquainted with her, his attitude, and the way he expressed his feelings smelled like pure bullshit. He’s a typical scum of the earth who doesn’t know how to treat a woman correctly, as even though things seem to develop nicely in Kya’s head, you can tell Kya used their “love” as a distraction to fill the void of loneliness.

Daisy Edgar-Jones has been getting these past couple years, from the mini series Normal People and a film that was released earlier this year Fresh which I really liked. I believe Daisy Edgar-Jones will soon develop into a terrific actress, as so far she’s been great in everything she’s been in, as I felt she was great as Kya as well she felt like the clear heart and soul of this film. Do I believe Daisy Edgar-Jones perhaps is a questionable choice to play Kya?! Kind of, considering the way this character is described you wouldn’t imagine her looking as pretty as Daisy, the film doesn’t necessarily do a great job in presenting her as a rough dirty gal, felt too clean. However: Considering the character is described as one who lives off eating grits… I feel this casting choice made clear sense.

Where the Crawdads Sing does however have a few flaws. I believe the pacing was a main issue, as this film felt like an hour longer than what it is. It just feels like sequences are running on forever, as there was a moment where my mind questioned the run time since this film felt like it was running a bit long. The court case side of the story was quite dull and extremely repetitive as well. Like every time we cut to the court room… You can clearly envision the same exact sequence and reaction from the court room happening over and over again, as honestly it’s rather pointless to show the many court sequences they had to offer, as they didn’t even try to switch it up or make it more appealing in anyway.

There is one extremely unintentional humorous conflict sequence between Chase and Tate, where it’s suppose to be a serious moment, but the sequence was indeed poorly executed to the point where I couldn’t stop laughing. I also felt the ending was rubbish, like that whole sequence was off putting as I felt it could’ve been done better. Either allow the audience to think for themselves of what might’ve happened to the dead corpse or show the reveal of the culprit then show us what happened afterwards. 

Overall, Where the Crawdads Sing was perfectly average. I recommend checking this one out, t’was a nice watch. If you’re considering going to have a date night out to see this film, men be prepared to be asked a serious question by your gal… Are you going to treat her like Tate would treat Kya in the bedroom or are you going to treat her like Chase would treat Kya in the bedroom?! If the answer ain’t Tate… Best believe she’ll find someone better and I don’t blame her. -Mitch Smietana

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