Strictly Confidential – DIGITAL DOWNLOAD

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Strictly Confidential - Liz Hurley has a secret!

Turning tortured grief and mental turmoil into entertainment is a tricky balancing act, that said, the early audition rounds of Britain’s Got Talent has served Simon Cowell well. Strictly Confidential follows in a similar vein having been written and directed by Damian Hurley inspired by the real life tragic loss of a close friend as well as his own father in a short space of time. The story here is that of a Mia (Georgia Lock) who, along with a group of friends and family reconvene for an annual gathering at a Caribbean holiday home after the death of her close friend Rebecca (Lauren McQueen).  For Rebecca’s mother Lily (Liz Hurley), sister Jemma (Genevieve Haunt) and friends James (Freddie Thorp), Will (Max Parker), and Natasha (Pear Chiravara) it’s an attempt to reconcile their grief in an effort for them all to move on.

Their grief is understandable though quite what has actually happened is always alluded to with characters uttering lines about the incident all petering out a la, ‘We’ve not all been together since……(looks away in turmoil)’  or ‘ I never thought she would……(looks to the sky teary eyed) etc etc.  But its Mia who thinks there was far more to the death of her friend than a tragic accident and she gradually uncovers secrets that builds to a climatic and far from persuasive twist in the tale that would not have been out of place in the desperate ratings craving dying days of juggernaut 1980’s soap opera, ‘Dallas’.

The Caribbean location is nicely photographed giving the film a sort of travelogue look for a Vogue photoshoot with impossibly glamorous cast led by Liz Hurley who is the draw here. Glammed up to the max and in a selection of plunging necklines her role here is marginally different from her previous and throws in a same sex love scene and in light that it’s her son who wrote this must have seen her sending him straight to his room after reading it. Georgie Lock battles with some risible dialogue but just about comes through this as best  as anyone could with a character named Mia Favor suggesting that when the director first cast her the characters full name in the first draft might have been Youowe Mia Favor.

In fairness to Damian Hurley he has done a perfectly serviceable job as director and it is competently shot. But Strictly Confidential’s script is one that is not without its moments occasionally alluding to the classic Daphne Du Maurier story, ‘Rebecca’ but there the similarity ends with risible dialogue that includes a character caught earwigging outside a bedroom door offering the explanation, ‘I was looking for some toothpaste’ and later another character uttering the catch all cliche, ‘This can’t be real!” and perhaps most appropriate is when another correctly states, ‘No one comes out of this well!’ in what is the filmic equivalent of an airport novel.

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related feature : Sam Riley chats about his new film, ‘She is Love’, improvising and being cast as Bond!

We chatted with the utterly charming Damian Hurley about the making of the film….

Here’s the Strictly Confidential trailer…….

Strictly Confidential is on digital from 13th May 2024 (inc. Sky/Amazon/Google Store/iTunes)

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