Title – Eden (2012)
Director – Megan Griffiths (Lucky Them)
Cast – Jamie Chung, Matt O’Leary, Beau Bridges, Scott Mechlowicz
Plot – Young Korean-American later known as Eden (Chung) is abducted from her small town life and forced into a life of sex slavery work at the hands of young yet ruthless criminal Vaughan (O’Leary) and his boss Bob Gault (Bridges). The film charts Eden’s time in this unforgiving life and her journey to find her way back to freedom.
“I’m going to douse you in gasoline and light the fuse”
Review by Eddie on 28/10/2014
A small budget movie with a big story to tell, Megan Griffith’s (no relation to Jordan, as far as we know) Eden is a movie that despite its limitations set forward by its financers is a movie that remains constantly engaging from start to finish even though it never reaches any great emotionally affecting heights that makes you think this story could easily be done once more in a manner that would make the most out of an horrific yet worthy true story.
There have not yet been many high profile movies set around the hot topic of sex trafficking/slavery yet there are now many stories out there told by real life participants in what is one of the world’s most lucrative and shameful industries. Eden is based on the real life tale (or is it real?) of Chong Kim here portrayed by the capable Jamie Chung who while not instilling Eden with a huge emotional heft, has many fine moments in a role that would of required a lot of her emotionally. While Chung is good as Eden the film finds a real power in its supports from grown up Frailty child actor Matt O’Leary and veteran character actor Beau Bridges.
O’Leary as young drug addicted runner of the operation Vaughan and Bridges as Marshall/slavery organiser Bob Gault are both great in some very creepy turns. Vaughan in particular is an on edge and believable participant in this horrific business while Bridges oozes slim as cold and calculating Marshall Gault. With these fine turns by the two male leads it acts as a showcase for just what Eden could have been had it found a way to tap emotionally into what these situations really meant for these poor women and those invested into it financially and while director Griffiths has enough flair behind the camera to suggest she has a career in the industry there needs to be more thought on how to wring the most out of her stories.
Eden is a small film worthy of your time, if not only to highlight the oft forgotten world that it depicts in all its unsavoury and harsh elements. With some very fine support turns and with a finely tuned pacing, Eden is a low budget film once more showcasing that budget does not make or break a movie if it has a worthy story to tell even if the film squanders a chance to make the most of its emotionally ripe story.
3 stiletto shoe heels out of 5