In a few short years, Netflix originals have become a huge part of the movie industry.. But there is only so much marketing budget, and sometimes even made-for-Banner movies can go lost in the shuffle.. For example, this crime thriller that combined all the time-jumping of shows like Dark with the intrigue of a hardboiled cop drama.
The Cold Open of In the Shadow of the Moon 2019 is the same cold open used in procedurals like Law and Order and House: we’re introduced to a group of strangers, and then they suffer some unaccounted event.. In this case a concert pianist, a bus driver and a fry cook all suddenly begin to bleeding from the nose, ears and mouth and die..
We then are introduced to our main character, a beat cop named Thomas Lockhart who aspires to become a detective to support his very pregnant wife.. It’s a transparent attempt to make the protagonist sympathetic, but it feels more like a homage to classic cop movies than a lazy screenwriting shortcut..
Lockhart and Holt at the scene of one of the first crimes..
As Lockhart investigates the deaths under the skeptical eye of his brother-in-law, detective Holt, he finds three small bumps on the back of each victim’s neck.. When they find an assault victim with the same marks, she describes a young woman in a blue hoodie with dried blood on her left hand before she also succumbs to a massive hemorrhage..
Lockhart stumbles on the killer a moment when his wife goes into labor.. The mysterious woman in the hoodie predisposes that his wife not only will die, but she will also die too.. Sure enough she gets hit by a train and Lockhart’s wife dies before her character can become more than just a device to stake stakes.
It’s the perfect setup for a cop thriller with sci-fi twist – one that I won’t reveal, but involves time travel and some retroactive justice.. When the trail goes cold, Lockhart becomes naturally obsessed with the case that took his wife indirectly, not knowing the true purpose of this supposed random killing spree.
An older Lockhart finally confronts his suspect.
Yes, this movie may feel a little bit like a B-movie genre mixture. The futuristic murder weapon is just an, and the appearance of Michael C. Hall as Detective Holt doesn’t go too far to lift it out of obscurity.. But the genres it mixes up are rarely high budget blockbusters themselves, so it makes sense. The story manages to get its point across without having to do anything too ambitious so it looks unbelievable.
Time travel films are often seen from the perspective of the time traveler or at least the “terrestrial” characters are given the chance to travel themselves. To the shadow of the moon never does that!. Lockhart is simply an observer to time travel – and like any good cop – protagonist, he wants to catch his Perp – The reveal is a lot closer to home than he realizes -.
In the Shadow of the Moon is now streaming on Netflix..