Exposed (2016 film)
Theatrical release poster
Gee Malik Linton|
(as Declan Dale)
|Screenplay by||Gee Malik Linton|
|Music by||Carlos José Alvarez|
|Edited by||Melody London|
|Distributed by||Lionsgate Premiere|
Exposed (originally titled Daughter of God) is a 2016 American thriller film, written and directed by Gee Malik Linton (credited as Declan Dale), at his directorial debut. The film stars Ana de Armas, Keanu Reeves, Christopher McDonald, Big Daddy Kane, and Mira Sorvino. The film was released in a limited release and through video on demand on January 22, 2016, by Lionsgate Premiere.
A police officer, Detective Galban, investigates the circumstances behind the death of his partner, Detective Joey Cullen. The mysterious case leads to an attempted police cover-up and a dangerous secret involving an unlikely young woman. The two parallel story lines initially appear to have little in common, but as events gradually unfold in the two separate urban worlds, the young woman, Isabel De La Cruz, appears to somehow be involved in the detective's demise.
Detective Cullen was depraved and corrupted. His colleagues fear that the investigation into his death will bring these facts to light. The results would include bad press for the police department and the loss of his pension for his family. The fear is based on the fact that one of the prime suspects in the case is a young ex-convict who had allegedly been sexually molested with a broomstick wielded by Detective Cullen. Supervisors within the precinct would rather let the murderer go free than to open up a Pandora's Box of troubles for everyone concerned.
Meanwhile in Isabel's private world, Isabel befriends a young girl named Elisa. Isabel suspects that Elisa is being abused at home by her father. She also believes that the strange beings she has begun seeing on the streets are angels. Accordingly, she thinks that her mysterious "impossible" pregnancy is a gift from God, which no one else is willing to believe. Isabel returns to her parents’ home to live. When Elisa says that Isabel’s father has hurt her, it triggers a sudden recollection in Isabel’s mind of sexual abuse from her father many years ago. All of Isabel’s buried memories are suddenly released in an avalanche of images. In truth, it turns out that Isabel's "angels" are a fabrication of her own mind. She created them to accompany a fictional narrative that would replace the unbearably traumatic memories of being raped by Detective Cullen on the subway platform the night that her "visions" began. She further suppressed the memory of catching him off guard afterwards and killing him in a fit of righteous rage.
In response to the memories and to Elisa’s crying, Isabel kills her father in order to protect Elisa. Detective Galban is then sent to the scene of the murder. When Galban looks at an old photograph of Isabel’s family it is revealed that Elisa is also a fabrication of Isabel’s mind. The imaginary girl is actually Isabel as a child. In the end Elisa disappears as Isabel is in church praying for the strength to accept everything that has happened.
- Ana de Armas as Isabel de La Cruz
- Keanu Reeves as Detective Scott Galban
- Christopher McDonald as Lt. Galway
- Big Daddy Kane as Black
- Mira Sorvino as Janine Cullen
- Venus Ariel as Elisa
- Ariel Pacheco as Naldo
- Laura Gómez as Eva
- Melissa Linton as Detective Sarah Ramirez
- Michael Rispoli as Detective Dibronski
- Danny Hoch as Detective Joey Cullen
- Ismael Cruz Cordova as Jose de La Cruz
- Monte Greene as Anthony Galban
- Jeanette Dilone as Marisol de La Cruz
On September 6, 2014, it was announced that Keanu Reeves and Ana de Armas would star together in the movie Daughter of God, after the identical news of April 4 for Eli Roth's Knock Knock, and that Reeves and Robin Gurland would be producers of the film. On November 7, Remark Films boarded on its first project to co-finance the film. On November 8, Mira Sorvino joined the film. The other cast include Christopher McDonald, Big Daddy Kane, Michael Rispoli, Laura Gómez. In December 2014, Carlos José Alvarez was set to score the film.
The original story was a surreal bi-lingual drama, reminiscent of Pan's Labyrinth and Irreversible, that focused on child sexual abuse, violence against women, mass incarceration, and police violence committed under the pretense of the state's authority. However, the executives at Lionsgate Premiere thought they had been sold a Keanu Reeves cop-thriller. To increase the film's potential box office, during the editing process Lionsgate changed the story's focus to center on Reeves' character, and changed the film into a crime thriller. Gee Malik Linton is the director of the film, but is listed under the pseudonym of Declan Dale.
Exposed received negative reviews from film critics. It holds an approval rating of 9% on review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, based on 23 reviews, with an average rating of 3/10. On Metacritic, the film holds a score of 23 out of 100, based on 5 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".
Frank Scheck of The Hollywood Reporter gave the film a mixed review writing: "There are glimpses here and there of the film Exposed might have been, especially through the well-photographed upper Manhattan locations that provide a memorably gritty atmosphere. But anyone looking for a good Reeves thriller would be well advised to wait until John Wick 2."
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- Scheck, Frank (January 25, 2016). "'Exposed': Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 21, 2016.