Under Still Waters

Watch Under Still Waters

"Some secrets are impossible to keep."
  • NR
  • 2009
  • 1 hr 25 min
  • 5.1  (802)

Under Still Waters is a tense and evocative psychological thriller from 2008, written and directed by Carolyn Miller. The film stars Lake Bell, Jason Biondo, and Jason Clarke as three former high school friends who reunite in a small town in upstate New York after many years apart. As they reconnect over drinks and memories, it becomes clear that something is deeply amiss in their town, and the past they thought they had left behind has come back to haunt them.

The film opens with a beautiful aerial shot of a leafy, idyllic town nestled in the mountains. But the tranquility is quickly shattered as we witness a car accident on a winding mountain road. The driver, a beautiful young woman named Molly (Bell), survives the crash, but her husband is killed instantly. After the funeral, Molly returns to the town where she grew up, hoping to find solace in the familiar sights and sounds of her childhood. But almost immediately, she finds herself drawn back into the mess of secrets, lies, and betrayals that she and her two old friends, Jeff (Biondo) and Charlie (Clarke), left behind years ago.

Jeff is now a successful businessman with a dark streak, while Charlie is a brooding loner who works odd jobs and drinks too much. Molly and Jeff start an intense affair almost immediately, but Charlie becomes paranoid that Molly is hiding something from him. As tensions escalate between the three of them, rumors begin to swirl around town about Molly's involvement in the car accident that killed her husband. It's never entirely clear what is true and what is false, but the creeping sense of dread and suspicion that hangs over the town, and the three characters, is palpable.

One of the most striking things about Under Still Waters is its atmosphere. The town, with its autumnal colors and misty mountains, is beautifully shot and hauntingly quiet. There are no big action set-pieces or jump-scares in the film, but Miller manages to create a sense of unease and tension that permeates every scene. The use of sound and music, in particular, is very effective - the soundtrack is mostly composed of low, rumbling drones and echoing piano notes that create an almost hypnotic mood.

The performances are also excellent across the board. Bell, in particular, gives a nuanced and powerful performance as Molly, a woman whose grief and guilt are slowly consuming her. Jeff and Charlie are both well-drawn characters too, with their own demons to contend with, and the dynamic between the three of them feels believable and complex.

The plot itself is somewhat convoluted, with lots of flashbacks and revelations that come out of left field. Some viewers might find the twists and turns a bit contrived, but the emotional impact of the film is undeniable. Under Still Waters is ultimately a story about the corrosive effects of guilt and secrets, and the toll that they can take on even the closest of friendships.

If there's a weakness to Under Still Waters, it's that the film feels somewhat derivative of other psychological thrillers from the same era - films like Shutter Island and The Prestige come to mind. There's a sense that Miller is trying to be too clever and too stylish, rather than telling a straightforward, character-driven story. But despite this, the film still manages to be engaging and thought-provoking, and it's definitely worth a watch for fans of slow-burn thrillers.

Overall, Under Still Waters is a haunting and atmospheric psychological thriller that will keep you on edge from start to finish. The setting and performances are fantastic, and the film's exploration of guilt and secrets is compelling. While the plot can be somewhat confusing at times, the emotional weight of the story makes it a memorable and worthwhile watch.

Under Still Waters is a 2009 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 25 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.1.

Under Still Waters
Where to Watch Under Still Waters
Under Still Waters is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime, Apple TV Channels, The Roku Channel, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and YouTube VOD. Some platforms allow you to rent Under Still Waters for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 25 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    5.1  (802)