Directed by: David Schwimmer | 106 minutes | drama, thriller | Actors: Clive Owen, Catherine Keener, Liana Liberato, Jason Clarke, Viola Davis, Chris Henry Coffey, Noah Emmerich, Brandon Molale, Nicole Forester, Noah Crawford, Jordan Trovillion, Chameria Law, Gordon Michaels, Sarab Kamoo, Garrett Ryan, Zanny Laird
Three films, three genres, three toppers. In the first decade of the 21st century, three films were released in a short space of time with pedophilia as an important subject. In drama ‘The Woodsman’ (2004) we took a deep dive into the psyche of a pedophile, in satire ‘Little Children’ (2005) the pedophile is the loose cannon that threatens life in suburbia and in thriller ‘Hard Candy’ ( 2006), a petty revenge takes control of a practicing pedophile.
Pedophilia also plays an important role in the American feature film ‘Trust’ (2010). Although the film is sold as a thriller drama, it is miles away from ‘Hard Candy’ and is more in line with ‘The Woodsman’, with the difference that ‘Trust’ is about the victims and not the pedophile. Thriller elements occasionally pass by, but they disturb rather than add anything.
Trust is therefore not based on its plot, but on its themes: the fragility of family ties, the sexualization of society, the processing of trauma and the loss of trust. In the first part of ‘Trust’ we see how young Annie builds a virtual relationship with one Charlie, a man who pretends to be a teenager but in reality could have been her father. When they meet in real life, a seduction scene follows that makes you feel sick. A scene in which purity and perversion rub together in silence, until the camera turns away, thank God.
The second part is about the processing of this encounter, in which the makers never forget how complex the soul life of an adolescent is. This part mainly deals with the separation between father and daughter, who each deal with what happened in their own way. Daughter wants to return to a normal life, father wants revenge. It is clear that these two goals are in each other’s way.
Unfortunately, the makers do not always know how to keep time. Especially at the end, dramatic scene follows dramatic scene. But where the drama sometimes derails, the effect of the matter always remains nuanced. Moreover, the acting is excellent, with the young Liana Liberato leading the way. Her transition from cheerful teenager to troubled old girl makes ‘Trust’ heartbreaking at times. So that this is more than a film that deals with the consequences of pedophilia with integrity and depth. ‘Trust’ is above all a drama that hits you hard and deeply.