Thomas & Harlow Jane Team Up For Unfortunately Awful Thriller
Dec 16, 2022
Dig boasts a killer soundtrack that has everything from Motown to folk. Unfortunately, that is where the fun ends. Thomas Jane might be getting outworked by his daughter Harlow Jane’s acting debut, but only because his performance is so lacking. Emile Hirsch (Speed Racer) is toeing the line between bad and so bad it’s good, but nonetheless, the performances pull the movie down in every scene. Director K. Asher Levin (The Shadow Diaries) keeps the ship together, but there is nothing special about Dig or its script penned by Banipal Ablakhad & Benhur Ablakhad (North Of Reno).
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Steve (Thomas Jane) loses his wife after an altercation with a gun goes horribly wrong. His daughter Jane (Harlow Jane) loses her hearing in the process and the family begins to implode. After a year of mourning, Jane still blames her dad for her mother’s death and Steve refuses to learn sign language. Though everyone around him thinks he should learn to sign, Steve instead puts all of his chips on an experimental treatment that might bring back Jane’s hearing. The only problem is that the procedure costs $30,000, and Steve runs a humble shop that does all sorts of repairs but doesn’t rake in much money. When a mysterious man (Emile Hirsch) approaches Steve to offer him the money, he is suspicious, but can’t turn down the chance to get his daughter’s hearing fixed. The job is simple: Strip down an abandoned house and remove everything, but whatever happens, do not damage the walls. Due to Jane’s loss of hearing, she misses that last note and accidentally impales a wall. What they find inside brings nothing but trouble in the form of a homicidal couple who holds them hostage. It’s a race against time to stay alive and find out what is so valuable about this dilapidated home.
Related: Thomas Jane Must Save His Daughter In Dig Trailer [EXCLUSIVE]
Thomas Jane in Dig
The film opens with a riveting scene that sets the table for the family dynamic. Very little happens by the end of Dig, and yet audiences are meant to feel like there is a mystery to be solved. That is certainly not the case. The forced sense of a twist coming doesn’t pay off, nor does it make sense in the world of Dig. At its heart the film is a thriller; unfortunately, the tone is more in line with a family drama and the resulting product is not a shining example of either genre. In the film’s defense, it’s only 90 minutes, but the family drama aspects make it feel much longer.
Thomas Jane is a tough watch from start to finish. The actor isn’t overacting so much as he is overreacting. His character is quick to use violence, even in relatively insignificant situations. In these moments of distress, Jane is solid, but he brings that same energy into every scene. Whether it’s being tortured by his captors or just having a conversation, he is constantly doing too much. Emile Hirsch’s character asks him several simple yes or no questions and the look on Jane’s face is exploding with confusion. Hirsch is on an entirely different level — his Southern accent is so forced audiences should find enjoyment in its absurdity. His performance, however, lives in the same world as Jane’s. Suffice it to say, Dig is not an acting clinic.
Thomas Jane and Harlow Jane in Dig
Harlow Jane is the film’s stand-out performance. She is acting with a capital A in scenes where she is a rebellious teen, but she becomes the most understated character in a movie full of underwhelming performances. The subtlety she shows while maintaining that teenage angst is a welcome addition and fits the role perfectly. Similarly, the music in the film is outstanding. It is, at times, so funky one might think they are in an Ocean’s Eleven movie. In the film’s more somber moments it dials back to a rustic folk sound that elevates what is an otherwise missable movie. Behind the camera, very little is going in terms of direction or cinematography and the script can be outright terrible. Sadly, Dig has little to offer audiences other than its magnificent soundtrack.
Dig released in theaters and on-demand September 23rd. The film is 90 minutes long and is rated R for pervasive language, violence, some sexual content, and brief drug use.
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