|A sparse, not too auspicious poster for Bertrand Tavernier's In the Electric Mist, which does, at least, reveal its star and Louisiana setting|
We follow sheriff detective Dave Robicheaux as he works for justice in New Iberia and New Orleans, Louisiana. Prostitutes are found dead, and a murder from the olden days of segregation seems to inform the recent misdeeds.
In the Electric Mist is an adaptation of James Lee Burke's (Dixie City Jam (1994)) In the Electric Mist with Confederate Dead (1993) from his 20-novel long Dave Robicheaux book series, written by Jerzy Kromolowski and Mary Olson-Kromolowski (The Pledge (2001), both) and directed by great French filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier (Daddy Nostalgia/Daddy Nostalgie (1990)).
I really liked this film, which is brimming with local lore and local linguistics so thick that it is often difficult to understand what exactly is being conveyed from character to character.
Tommy Lee Jones (U.S. Marshals (1998)) is eminent and shares especially good interplay with Justina Machado (Body of Proof (2011), TV-series), who plays a nuanced FBI agent role, who also ends up incurring some guilt in the swampy - both literally and figuratively speaking - reality that is portrayed here.
Watch 3 minutes of the film here
Box office: 7.9 mil. $
= Unknown (but should likely count as at least a big flop)
[In the Electric Mist premiered 7 February (Berlin International Film Festival) and runs 117 minutes. It is the second Robicheaux novel to be adapted, following mega-flop Heaven's Prisoners (1996) starring Alec Baldwin. Shooting took place entirely on location in Louisiana. Something went wrong on the film, leading to its not getting an American release; it was only shown twice one evening in Burke's hometown of New Iberia, Louisiana and was then released straight-to-DVD in North America. Tavernier released a book accounting making the film; Pas à Pas dans la Brume Électrique [Step by Step into The Electric Mist] (2009). The film made the vast majority of its gross in his native France; 7.2 mil. $ (91.1 % of the total gross). The 2nd and 3rd biggest markets were Spain with 355k $ (4.5 %) and Belgium with 249k $ (3.2 %). If the budget was around a modest 5 mil. $, which seems likely, (though it would be far less than the budget for the first Burke adaptation's 25 mil. $ budget), the theatrical performance would rank the film as a big flop. It made in excess of 1.9 mil. $ on home video sales in North America. Be aware that the North American DVD release is a 102 minute studio cut of the film, whereas we in the rest of the world have gotten the 112 minute director's cut, which is what this review is based on. In the Electric Mist is fresh at 64 % with a 6.1/10 critical average at Rotten Tomatoes.]
What do you think of In the Electric Mist?