Writer, Director: Michael Bentham
Starring: Geraldine Hakewell, Matilda Ridgway, Mark Leonard Winter and Tom Wren
Running Time: 84 minutes
When a 4-year-old girl, Natasha, makes a serious allegation against a politician’s 9-year-old son, an attempt by the children’s parents to tackle the issue in a cooperative way soon degenerates into a vicious confrontation.
Disclosure asks the question, what would you do if your child came to you and began telling you a story about something that happened to them, that is one of your worst nightmares as a parent?
And what would be the consequences of your actions?
The most outstanding feature of this quite confronting film is the truly excellent cinematography. The camera moves in rhythm with the hot Australian weather in which the scene is set. Images of the Australian bush, the sounds of birds, the verdant landscape, the refreshing swimming pool. Images of water float through the film in tune with the action between the four main characters – the parents of the alleged 4 year old victim, Natasha, and the alleged 9 year old perpetrator, Ethan. Water is the source of cooling spontaneous refreshment after dry and hard discussions. There are scenes of impossible to contain disagreement as the parents work their way through the allegations, trying strenuously to defend their children, and striving to bring around the other side to their respective causes.
This film, like a bottle of good wine, tastes better the longer you leave it. The film deals with a difficult subject without trivialising it. What, upon first viewing, may appear to be somewhat cautious acting, becomes, upon longer contemplation, a reflection of the challenges posed to the parents as they attempt to meander their way through a minefield of issues. On the surface trying to maintain friendships, whilst wishing at heart to be very confrontational. Suppressed anger and resentment is a current running through the film. Exposing of secrets. Seeking opportunities to embarrass. Desire for revenge. Threats and menaces. Potent forces. Social conventions being pushed to the limit – and, ultimately, not contained.
Recommended: 3 out of 5 stars.
Available to rent or buy from 15 September