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Very little is known about the plot of this intriguing independent film that features a cast of few headliners but some names still familiar. The always reliable and often underused John Hawkes, last seen in 2015’s Everest, plays the aptly named Sampson, a private detective with a world-weary view entangled in some low-level crimes and an attractive girl he’s meant to be looking for. He learns about more missing girls, working at a shifty topless bar and gets on the wrong side of some dangerous hoodlums. Crystal Reed plays Dorothy, the young girl he’s meant to find, and along the way gets involved with Dichen Lachman another stripper and Natalie Zea an as yet unnamed woman who, based on the trailer, appears to have a large emotional stake in the story and with Sampson. Rounding out the cast are Robert Forster as Gordy Lyons, a kingpin in all of this, and Jeff Fahey as an accomplice. Not seen in the clip and also not named yet in the cast is also Joanna Cassidy, who is perhaps best known for her role in 1982’s Blade Runner, though has been working steadying since, both in movies and television.
The tension-filled trailer teases something dark and gritty, with a dour hero in a seedy underworld. Hawkes looks to be in great form here, with a weary look and an unforgiving air. With plenty of near naked young women on-screen, there is, conversely, and certainly appropriately considering the plot, nothing sexual about it, instead a twisted uncomfortableness surrounding it, a seedy, troublesomeness that really has impact. Sampson seems both at the end of rope and at a point of no return, obviously crossing a line he shouldn’t in trying to rescue Dorothy.
Written and directed by Dennis Hauck, in his feature-length film debut (who in his previous short film, worked with Lachman), the dialogue is sharp and almost poetic. The clip feels very similar in tone with 2013’s under-seen Out of the Furnace, starring Christian Bale, another character-driven, violent story that should have had a larger audience. Shot entirely in 35mm Techniscope, Too Late has an aged feel to it, a throwback to the drive-in B-movies of the 1970s, which is surely the intention. A promising clip, there is a lot to like and hopefully will live up to the interest this trailer sparks.
Too Late opens April, 2016.
John Hawkes, Natalie Zea, Crystal Reed, Dichen Lachman, Robert Forster