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Mass REVIEW: Compelling story of grief and guilt | Films | Entertainment

Two middle-aged couples meet in a room in a rural US church with a mediator (Michelle N Carter). After engaging in awkward small talk, the couples exchange family photographs, an exercise designed to break down barriers. Jay (Jason Isaacs) and Gail (Martha Plimpton) are icy and slightly aggressive. Richard (Reed Birney) and Linda (Ann Dowd) are edgy and defensive.

Then Gail suddenly ramps up the tension. “Tell me about your son,” she asks abruptly.

“Why?” replies a shocked Linda. “Because he killed my son.” Six years earlier, Richard and Linda’s boy murdered Jay and Gail’s boy in a high-school shooting.

This is the first face-to-face meeting of four parents who are racked with grief and, in Richard and Linda’s case, guilt.

Without flashbacks, without even showing us those photographs, Kranz keeps us in that room to watch four distraught people lay bare their souls.

Mass is available on NOW and Sky Cinema now




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