With Hold The Dark Director Jeremy Saulnier and Writer/Actor Macon Blair (Blue Ruin, Green Room) leave little to the imagination in terms of violence while leaving just enough to the imagination in terms of plot, affording us the opportunity to discover a wider story.
Ostensibly a tale of revenge akin to Blue Ruin yet much darker and colder, the prevailing ambiguities of Hold The Dark serve to provide the audience with a choice of interpretations.
The fact that the film is billed as a ‘Mystery’ by the distributors is perhaps misleading though, while not a ‘Mystery’ in terms of Genre, there are certainly mysteries to explore beyond the film’s running time.
Perhaps Saulnier and Blair’s greatest achievement with Hold The Darkis in balancing ambiguity and symbolism in such a way that the tonal shift from the macabre to the melodramatic is almost imperceptible. No dialogue is wasted and just as the audience is piecing together seemingly throw-away lines from earlier with later developments, new plot points emerge.
Hold The Dark will not be for everyone, but fans of the duo’s preceding projects and those of a mind to reflect during and after the film will find this a rewarding endeavour.