Movie Review: Netflix's 'The Silence Of The Marsh' Lands Quietly

The Silence of the Marsh El silencio del pantano Pedro Alonso Q Netflix
Image by Netflix
An intriguing crime drama turned curious offshoot of the author-writing-a-novel sub-genre; “The Silence of the Marsh” (“El Silencio del Pantano”) delivers something unexpected. Viewers are left to wonder what is real and written. A departure from the hope that a straight-up crime thriller lays in our path.

Pedro Alonso of “Gran Hotel” and “Money Heist” fame takes on the central role of Q, a successful Valencian novelist whose latest book seems to mark another chapter in a popular series that revolves around a homicidal protagonist. It is here that Netflix’s “The Silence of the Marsh” begins blurring the lines as Q’s world and the real one intersects.

Murder, kidnapping, money laundering, and corruption. No, this is not another episode of Netflix’s “Ozark.” It is a disjointed and often perplexing film that has its flow constantly disrupted by a scattering of off-beat scenes before finding a defined rhythm in the second half. If you do not go in expecting a crime thriller, “The Silence of the Marsh” should not disappoint.

For those hoping that Netflix has welcomed another suspense tale in the vein of recent additions “Twin Murders: The Silence of the White City” and “The Legacy of the Bones,” this is not it. There is nary a twist or suspenseful wrinkle. It is all pretty straight-forward. “The Silence of the Marsh” has more in common with “Close Enemies” than either of the titles mentioned above.

There are so many unanswered questions by the time the movie ends, it is tough to not be frustrated. In many ways, it feels like a series of strewn together vignettes. That said, there are some impressive performances to help salvage things as the movie’s identity crisis lingers without resolution.

Actor Nacho Fresneda gives a chilling turn as the arguable lead of the movie, Falconetti, while Pedro Alonso captivates with his ongoing skill for on-screen captivation. Elsewhere, the cast is incredibly natural. However, the script does not allow them to entirely flesh out their characters. “The Silence of the Marsh” is more about making an impression than an in-depth analysis.

Fans of Spanish-language fare should also enthusiastically prepare to spot favorites from “Unauthorized Living” (Ferro and Carlos) in minimal roles that offer exciting bursts. Albeit, neither actor is leveraged to their full potential. Despite Pedro Alonso getting billed in Netflix’s promo material as the lead, “The Silence of the Marsh” is more of an ensemble affair.

In truth, the Netflix original left a lot of potential on the table. The characters lack the depth to feel they existed before cameras started rolling, and it feels like they stop doing so when it ends. As someone who went in with high expectations, “The Silence of the Marsh” ends up landing so quietly, it does not make an echo.

Rating: 5.5/10

“The Silence of the Marsh” (“El Silencio del Pantano”) is currently streaming on Netflix, along with other Eclectic Pop suggestions.