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Sunday, April 11, 2021

The Long Island Serial Killer: A Mother's Hunt for Justice 2021 * * 1/2 Stars


"I'm beginning to think there's a cover-up". Oh Lifetime Movie Network, you slay me! You really do.

Anyway, in The Long Island Serial Killer: A Mother's Hunt for Justice, the killer in question is never really established. I mean I had an idea (or ideas) but the film sort of left me dangling like a loose end. 

"Long Island" stars veteran actress and Philly native, Kim Delaney. She looks a little different than what I remember as she sans her brunette locks for long, sort of unwashed blond ones. Delaney plays an alcoholic, chain smoker of a mother named Mari Gilbert. Her performance is disciplined and raw and she's probably the best thing going for a Lifetime lifetime-r like "Long Island". 

Based on true events, directed by Stanley M. Brooks, and feeling like an episode of Law & Order minus the title cards (the bad guy even looked kinda like Vincent D'Onofrio), The Long Island Serial Killer: A Mother's Hunt for Justice chronicles middle-aged Mari Gilbert (Delaney). After her sex worker daughter goes missing and winds up dead, Mari vows to find out who murdered said daughter. The suspect could possibly be a serial killer from the Long Island area (or some crooked rozzer on a power trip, who knows). 

"Long Island" with its estimable intentions, is not as shocking, compelling, or frenzied as most Lifetime endeavors. It's a movie of rare restraint, populated by blurred characters who fade in and out and are not always fully defined. The flick is edited in a cross-cutting manner like most crime dramas and I sort of liked that. However, "Long Island" feels a little unfinished as its outcome is only explained in detail following a series of paragraphed, closing credits. It's malfeasance spectacle that although flowing and steadfast, doesn't quite do the viewer "justice". 

Written by Jesse Burleson

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