THE UNFORGIVABLE on Netflix is a crime-thriller about redemption. It stars Sandra Bullock in a very laidback and strong performance as an ex-convict newly released after two decades in prison. Read our full The Unforgivable movie review here!

THE UNFORGIVABLE is a new Netflix crime-thriller based on a British TV series. And yes, obviously, some things are a bit rushed – or told in a different way. Basically, you might want to check out the series afterward as well.

Overall, the story is all about redemption. Well, that and family since the main character is looking for her little sister. Sandra Bullock is truly amazing in the lead and what the story lacks in depth is more than made up for by her.

Continue reading our The Unforgivable movie review below.

Sandra Bullock in a different role

There is absolutely nothing happy or positive about Sandra Bullock in The Unforgivable. She plays the character of Ruth Slater, who is being released from prison when the movie begins. She’s served a 20 years sentence for murder and is met with ice-cold stares from everyone, she comes across.

The reason: She was convicted of killing a cop which gives her the “cop-killer” stigma. This means everyone from correctional officers at the prison to the average street cop knows who she is. She is watched constantly and there is no doubt that she could very easily end up in an “accident”.

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In The Unforgivable, Sandra Bullock delivers a performance that is very laidback and stripped of vanity. She has scars – and receives more throughout the movie. The world has changed a lot in the 20 years Ruth Slater was in prison. However, she really only has one wish: To find her baby sister!

The Unforgivable – Netflix Review

Other amazing actors in the cast

The younger sister of Sandra Bullock’s character, Ruth Slater, is portrayed by Aisling Franciosi. Ruth knew her as Katie, but after being adopted when Ruth went to prison (she was her Guardian), only her full name Katherine is used. Katherine knows she’s adopted, but knows nothing of her past.

Aisling Franciosi delivers yet another strong performance as Katherine/Katie. I would have liked to see her in even more scenes, but the story in The Unforgivable is more about Ruth. If you’re not familiar with Aisling Franciosi
yet, then be sure to check out her starring role in The Nightingale and the FX on Hulu series Black Narcissus.

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In key supporting roles, we find big-name stars such as Viola Davis (Fences, The Suicide Squad), Vincent D’Onofrio (The Cell, Rings), Jon Bernthal (The Walking Dead), and Richard Thomas (It). I don’t want to give away what roles they have, but they do all leave an impact despite relatively little screen-time.

Watch The Unforgivable on Netflix!

Nora Fingscheidt is the director of The Unforgivable which I found had a solid style and pace for the story being told. The young German director is still a relative newcomer, but she did have a lot of success with her previous feature film System Crasher (2019). Personally, I really look forward to watching what she’ll come up with next.

The Unforgivable was written by Peter Craig (The Town), Hillary Seitz (Christopher Nolan’s Insomnia), and Courtenay Miles (Mindhunter season 2). Now, I know that not everyone will be crazy about this one, but to me, The Unforgivable played out like a solid Harlan Coben series in feature film form.

Twists and turns along the way as you figure out how everything is connected. Would it have been better as a Netflix limited series? Yeah, probably. It would have given us more time to truly understand all the characters. Do I think this feature film version is a bust? Absolutely not! Check it out for yourself on Netflix.

The Unforgivable is out on Netflix globally on December 10, 2021.

Details

Director: Nora Fingscheidt
Writers: Peter Craig, Hillary Seitz, Courtenay Miles
Stars: Sandra Bullock, Vincent D’Onofrio, Jon Bernthal, Richard Thomas, Linda Emond, Aisling Franciosi, Rob Morgan, Emma Nelson, Will Pullen, Thomas Guiry, Viola Davis

Plot

Released from prison after serving a sentence for a violent crime, Ruth Slater (Bullock) re-enters a society that refuses to forgive her past. Facing severe judgment from the place she once called home, her only hope for redemption is finding the estranged younger sister she was forced to leave behind.

I write reviews and recaps on Heaven of Horror. And yes, it does happen that I find myself screaming, when watching a good horror movie. I love psychological horror, survival horror and kick-ass women. Also, I have a huge soft spot for a good horror-comedy. Oh yeah, and I absolutely HATE when animals are harmed in movies, so I will immediately think less of any movie, where animals are harmed for entertainment (even if the animals are just really good actors). Fortunately, horror doesn't use this nearly as much as comedy. And people assume horror lovers are the messed up ones. Go figure!
Karina