There sure is nothing better than delving into the world of psychological thrillers that not only offer an exhilarating experience but also reflect on our own fears in a lot of ways. Netflix’s new Spanish film ‘Twin Murders: The Silence of the White City’, which is an adaptation of the best-selling novel El silencio de la ciudad blanca by Eva García Sáenz de Urturi, is another addition to the genre.
Like most psychological thrillers, it does a decent job introducing you to morally ambiguous characters who are all bound together to a common motive. It gradually reels you in by only presenting small pieces of its puzzling premise throughout its runtime and then eventually putting all of these pieces together. Most of all, it also brings in some intriguing symbolism and religious references. However, amidst all of these positives, its biggest issue is lack of attention to detail. Despite its potential, ‘Twin Murders: The Silence of the White City’ simply lacks the gravity that a thriller should hold to get your heart racing.
Set in the city of Vitoria, 2016, the film begins with the discovery of the dead bodies of a young boy and girl, both of the same age, who are found in the crypt of an Old Cathedral. Strangely, the intricacies of this murder remind everyone of a series of murders that took place about 20 years ago. Unai López de Ayala, more commonly known as “Kraken,” is an inspector who is well versed with the history of these murders and finds himself dealing with the same all over again.
The fact that the man who had earlier committed them is still in prison only suggests that this new murderer is nothing but a copycat inspired by the previous ones. As the murderer kills more people and follows a very organized pattern of killing his victims, Unai López de Ayala races against time to find this psychopathic killer. In the end, he discovers that the murderer is much closer to him than he had initially imagined.
For the most part, the film is presented from the perspective of the protagonist, Unai López de Ayala and follows the quintessential “whodunit” format. As most would expect, it makes the investigation itself a very consequential part of the premise but instead of waiting for the final moments to reveal the true identity of the killer, it does so in the first few moments itself. With this, the movie heavily relies on the intentions of the killer to evoke a sense of curiosity in the mind of the viewer.
Although this approach does keep you glued to it till the end, it fails to hold the right amount of peril and profundity that you expect from it. Moreover, somewhere midway through its runtime, the investigation takes a back seat and a forced romance is introduced. The main character, Unai López de Ayala, has a casual affair with his boss but as a viewer, it’s hard to make head or tails of why they’re doing what they’re doing.
The good thing about it is that it keeps you guessing throughout its runtime and instead of simply being a cliched psychological noir, it gives you a glimpse of the antagonist’s emotional trajectory and all the things of his past that have led him into committing such atrocities. However, even in this aspect of its storyline, there seems to be a lack of detail on how the killer seems to be an expert in pulling off such complex murders. Because of this, the film seems to work somewhere between the lines of being a typical psychological thriller and a character study of the antagonist.
In the end, ‘Twin Murders: The Silence of the White City’ doesn’t completely come together. Despite impressive performances the final revelation feels a little over-the-top. At its best, the film is a decent one time watch. You shouldn’t expect anything more from it.
Read More: Best Psychological Thrillers on Netflix