Josie (2017)

  • Time: 100 min
  • Genre: Drama | Thriller
  • Director: Eric England
  • Cast: Sophie Turner, Dylan McDermott, Jack Kilmer


Hank, a solitary man living a dull existence in the sleepy, Southern town raises eyebrows when he develops a questionable relationship with Josie, a recently transplanted high school student.

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  • “There’s all sorts of stories,” goes the opening drawl of Josie, a noir-tinged drama which attempts to justify its slow burn storytelling with a preposterous third-act twist.

    Dylan McDermott plays Hank, a former death row prison guard now self-exiled in a shabby motel with only his two pet tortoises to keep him company. When not fishing and being plagued by visions of a blonde-haired prisoner (Micah Fitzgerald), Hank spends his time being bothered by either his nosy neighbours Martha (Robin Bartlett) and her husband Gordie (Kurt Fuller), or Marcus (Jack Kilmer) and Gator (Daeg Faerch), the two delinquent students fond of pushing his buttons as he does his duty as their high school’s security guard. His is a quiet life that seems both primed and unprepared for the disruption that arrives in the form of Josie (Sophie Turner).

    Newly moved into town, the tattooed high-schooler piques Hank’s interest with her tank tops and short shorts. It doesn’t take long for Hank to be spying on her sunbathing and experiencing flashes of jealousy when Josie starts hanging out with Marcus, with whom he has an oddly antagonistic relationship. Josie tumbleweeds along, wrapping an aura of mystery around its title character, and doing its best to mislead its viewers that something of interest is about to happen. Unfortunately, nothing ever does. All of the characters are flimsily written archetypes at best, and the story is on life support even it’s electro-charged with a reveal that is less shocking and clever than screenwriter Anthony Ragnone II believes it to be.

    Eric England’s direction is pedestrian and uninspired, McDermott one-note, and Turner a striking if unbothered presence.

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