It’s trite to say a debut performance is a revelation, but the whole film simply does not work without McInerny, who is fully convincing as a girl on an emotional precipice. It’s an astoundingly calibrated turn, one of barely lidded emotions that eventually skitter about
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Fearsome and fearless at the same time, Palm Trees and Power Lines practically dares viewers to watch what’s happening on screen without flinching.
Throughout the film, both Dack and her revelatory star teeter through shifting concepts, black and white, yes and no, that only grow more jarring and tense as Palm Trees and Power Lines unfolds.
With its stark portrayal of abuse, Palm Trees and Power Lines won’t be for everyone. But the director’s assured approach to a thorny topic, the way she needles at assumptions about grooming and the care with which she treats Lea’s story will linger with me for a long while.
Palm Trees and Power Lines finds a truth, one it wrenches out of an experience.
It’s a compelling, edgy story of exploitation with no easy answers.
Dack’s work as a director is on the screen, in the characters, and widely successful with how the actors convey her vision. Her writing and directing of Palm Trees and Power Lines will make a difference because it’s organic, original, and essential.