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Starring Clive Owen and Catherine Keener, Jason Clarke , Liana Liberato, and Viola Davis; Chris Henry Coffey, with Noah Emmerich
Screenplay by Andy Bellin and Robert Festinger
Directed by David Schwimmer

IN SHORT: So disturbing you should run for the  hills. [Rated R for disturbing material involving the rape of a teen, language, sexual content and some violence.106 minutes]

We know we have a lot of readers who just look at the dollar rating found at the bottom of our reviews, and that's good enough for them. Well, there is no rating on David Schwimmer's Trust, for the very simple reason that I want you to read and understand exactly what is going on here.

We also know that many readers will see the name David Schwimmer and make the proper connection to the actor from the television megahit friends. Same man. Actor David Schwimmer has nothing to do in this film. Director David Schwimmer has chosen to make a very different kind of story. He has put together a cast that fully inhabit their roles. The script is solid and the film will drive home emotional reactions you never thought you'd sit through in a movie theater. Frankly, we think any rational adult will want to run, screaming, for the exit door within the first fifteen minutes of the film. That a real [ass-backwards] compliment to Schwimmer and his team. We have to sit through films to the very end. If you make it to the very end, give yourself a gold star and ponder the message of Trust, a sobering, terrifically scary message that we won't get, um, spoil.

Trust is centered on an all-American family, living in the suburbs of Chicago, called Cameron. Will and Lynn (Clive Owen and Catherine Keener) are the loving, hard working parents. They have three children and, as the story begins, as focussed on the imminent departure of their first son Peter (Spencer Curnutt) to his first year of college at Michigan. Middle daughter Annie (Liana Liberato) is an average fourteen year old, busy with school and texting her friends on the phone.

Via some site for teens, Annie has met and befriended Charlie a fifteen year old boy out in California. It would be accurate to say that Charlie has become Annie's best friend ever. She's spilled all her secrets and, in return, has come to know the boy on the other end of the wire (so to speak) better than anyone else in her life. Long story short, Annie has fallen big time for Charlie who, after two months of near constant testing, has admitted that he isn't a high school seniot. He's really well into grad school and, well, wanna meet at the mall? Well, duh.

At the mall, a very exhited and anxious Annie meets a very different figure in the guise of Charlie (Chris Henry Coffey). Let's just say that this Charlie is not in grad school, either, But, just as a spider spins a web to ensnare a fly, Charlie has wormed his way into Annie's emotional life and, sitting in the middle of a mall and all, she feels safe. And Charlie says he's going to bring her a present. Something her "parents would never buy for her" -- but Annie won't get that present until Charlie has calmed her down and bought her ice cream and talked to her in just that way that she's been texting back and forth for months.

Charlie isn't what Annie thought he'd be. And, in the motel room that Charlie has rented, Annie gets the present that Charlie promised. She also loses her virginity. It is not a Mrs. Robinson type moment.

By this point, that "run for the hills" effect should be kicking in, if you've paid to see this film. Props to Schwimmer and his cast for being "real". But what it is is what it is and, if you're anything like yours Cranky, you're really not going to want to be in your seat by this point.

It will take the work of a therapist Gail Friedman (Viola Davis) and the investigative work of FBI agent Doug Tate (Jason Clarke) to get Annie to confront her feelings and realize that her "firt love" was nothing like anything she may have read in a romance novel. Or seen on a movie screen. And Annie is so deep into the situation that she tells no one anything about it. It is only because that first meeting was observed observed by Annie's best friend who, noticing a change in Annie's behavior, reports the meeting to school officials. Said officials contact the police and there's a big scene with Annie being taken out of school.

We can't be more specific because, as we wrote above, by the time you get this far in to Trust, you will want to run for the exit. As perfect as every element of Trust is, there is no way you will want to sit through it.

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The Cranky Critic website is Copyright © 1995  -  2017  by Chuck Schwartz. Articles by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of,©, ®, their respective studios and are used by permission. All Rights Reserved. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy Award(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.