therhyswelsh’s review published on Letterboxd:
It’s been a whole day since I actually seen Where the Crawdads Sing and I still after sitting on it for a while have very little to say about it. Based on the best selling book of the same name, the film follows Kya (Daisy Edgar-Jones), a reclusive outsider who was abandoned young by her family, who is thrusted into the world of romance by two new lovers and also is the lead suspect in a murder case. If that plot sounds a bit scattershot and all over the place genre wise, than you have found the clear problem with this film. The film is dealing with a lot of different plots at once and it’s a bit overwhelming, half the time I forgot a murder had happened with how much romance was happening. Every plot element is super uncooked because of how little time they spend on each plot point and how much they don’t jell well together, the romance in particular is so bland and boring because the two male characters have no personality and no chemistry with the lead.
The mixing genre and plot elements probably work better in the book, but with a lack of time spent on each they are all so underdeveloped. The film is really held together by the central character and performance by Daisy-Edgar Jones, it’s pretty clear that the character work is easily the strongest element of this material because everything outside of Kya pales in comparison to her. Edgar-Jones was wonderful in this year’s Fresh and she continues to impress here, if it wasn’t for her this film would really lack the emotional core it does have. Direction is kind of bland here but it does have some really nice scenery shots, the Marsh itself is a nice wondrous location. The direction feels like a sump up of everything this film does, it’s very bland but serviceable, everything is undercooked and under-utilised but it’s central performance keeps it afloat. Wouldn’t recommend this one really, but there’s definitely a lot worse that has came out this year, it’s a serviceable watch for sure.
Leaving this one off with a 4/10, could of been better but what we got was super okay.