Dark Waters (2019) Review


Rob Bilott a corporate defence attorney takes on a very different case when he has an environmental lawsuit against a chemical company who he usually defends. This delves into a big history of very dangerous pollution.


This film is based on a true story and what happened to people because of chemical company DuPont and how Robert Bilott became their worst nightmare and sparked a 20 year legal battle! This is all because Wilbur Tennant a farmer visits Rob as he knows his grandmother and asks that he helps him work out the unexplained deaths of his animals with horrendous consequences to them. He had lost over 190 cows to many different medical conditions.

This was something Rob did not really want to get involved with but when he had to witness Wilbur shoot one of the cows when it started to attack them he realises that something is very wrong. Deciding to take on the case what he would then go on to uncover would make a difference in many peoples lives as well. It was not only the animals that had been poisoned for all of those years, it was the residents as well.

My biggest issue with the film was that it did not fit in with the year it was actually set in, we take a look through the late 90s and early 00s mainly and then jumping to 2010s. But when in the 90s and 00s everything seemed like it was in the 60s or 70s, the fashion, hairstyles and cars. It just seemed very strange in all honesty I grew up in the 90s and this did not feel anything near what it was like. This might seem like a small problem but for me personally it totally spoilt the film trying to accept which time it was in and it just felt so very old. Not forgetting that female lawyers not being able to still work after having children and having to keep hidden when they found out they were pregnant. Seriously which decade were we supposed to be in? Just felt very very strange and odd.

I expected so much more from a film with an amazing cast led by Mark Ruffalo who was still a good lead but nothing exceptional or anything like that. Which in all honesty was such a shame! Anne Hathaway given a very small role and not really used in the best way at all. Bill Pullman was difficult to understand which I didn’t feel was the best for a lawyer. It was nice to see both Tim Robbins and Victor Garber in a film on the big screen again.

Considering it was supposed to have an edge to it and feel interesting it just lacked that gripping edge and I was disappointed by that. I just found myself bored rather than annoyed or excited about what they were going to reveal next. The film felt like it was attempting to get Oscar nominations and considering it is released now that completely failed, Oscar bait that has now come after awards season. The story is essential to highlight the mistreatment of people but it lacked the compassion and impact we saw in Erin Brockovich.

4 thoughts on “Dark Waters (2019) Review

  1. I actually really enjoyed this movie – but sometimes I’m a sucker for a really slowly unfolding kind of story, especially about someone taking on a big and powerful corporation. On that note, I can see what you’re saying about a lot of it. I especially agree that Hathaway was really underutilized, she’s so talented I really wanted to see more of her in the film. I also see your point about the feel of the film and it seeming more retro than the 90s – The only help I can offer there is that smaller, isolated towns (especially ones in the Midwest) often have that older, rustic feel to them. Since I grew up in just such a small town, the tone of the film felt about right for me. But – I think your review is really well written and I definitely see a lot of your points!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for this comment, as it is good to have a different view especially when it comes to the small town. So basically they were a little bit behind when it came to the cars and fashion, just feel really strange when watching and having remember which year it was supposed to be. I think I expected more from the film which was probably silly really as given the release date it should have made me think it wouldn’t be as good as the awards season films.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I definitely agree that there were some things to be desired. I think you are right on there, and I also agree it made it hard to remember what year the story was taking place -especially since they jumped through so many different years!


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