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Jane Harper’s novel hinges on dual mysteries: one recent and the other in the distant past; both involving deaths that might have been murders.
Federal Agent Aaron Falk returns to his home town after an absence of over twenty years to attend the funeral of his childhood friend, Luke, who allegedly killed his wife and child before taking his own life – a victim of the madness that has ravaged this community after more than a decade of drought.
When Falk reluctantly agrees to stay and investigate the crime, he opens up an old wound – the death of 17-year-old Ellie Deacon. Falk begins to suspect these two crimes, separated by decades, are connected. As he struggles to prove not only Luke’s innocence but also his own, Falk finds himself pitted against the prejudice towards him and pent-up rage of a terrified community.
The screen adaptation, directed by Robert Connolly, stars Eric Bana. (Rated R)
Running Time: 117 minutes