Set in the Midwest, where little girls drive big trucks and men work in cattle yards, Joanna (Gellar) excels in her work as a traveling saleswoman for a trucking company mostly because it keeps her on the move. When a business trip brings her back to her home state of Texas, she feels drawn to a small town to which she should have no connection by nightmares in which she re-experiences the brutal murder of a young woman. When she crosses paths with Terry (Australian Peter O'Brien, in his first American role), she intuits and then discovers her connection to the victim.
The casting of O'Brien is particularly effective, as his unfamiliarity to viewers leaves his intent open to question. A good 15 years older than Joanna, Terry is less rugged- than hard-looking but with a palpable virility to which she is drawn. Meanwhile, although sometimes their shot composition renders it difficult to orient oneself in the scene, British director Asif Kapadia and cinematographer Roman Osin, who made
together, have crafted a gorgeously photographed film, shooting in scope and utilizing bleach bypass, in which silver is retained in the dye, to achieve stark imagery that captures the desolate rural landscape and its feeling of isolation. Only the too-convenient arrival of Joanna's stalker ex mars an otherwise tightly plotted film.
Cast: Sarah Michelle Gellar, Peter O'Brien, Adam Scott, Kate Behan and Sam Shepard
Director: Asif Kapadia
Screenwriter: Adam Sussman
Producers: Aaron Ryder and Jeffrey Silver
Rating: PG-13 for violence, terror and disturbing images
Running time: 85 min.
Release date: November 10, 2006