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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
A Very Scary Movie
by Betty Jo Tucker

I know superhero movies are all the rage now. But for me, itís more enjoyable viewing films about real-life heroes like Rob Bilott, a corporate defense attorney who took on a powerful chemical company with a record of environmental pollution.

As luck would have it, Bilott is played by Mark Ruffalo, an actor known for portraying The Hulk in recent movies. Unlike that superhero, Bilott doesnít rely on physical force to deal with the bad guys. Instead, he uses brains, persistence and compassion.  And Ruffalo projects all that in this informative legal thriller directed by Todd Haynes.

Because Bilottís job involves defending corporations, he canít imagine himself taking on a case involving pollution by a big company. However, his grandmother asks him to help a friend who canít get anyone to listen about whatís happening to his farm since a landfill next to him became a DuPont dumping ground. Chemicals from that dump are leaking into a body of water his cattle drink from, and his animals are dying.

As Bilott finds out more about this situation, he canít say no. But little did he realize his battle would go on for years, and that it would involve much more than cattle as well as serious problems of his own.        

Watch ďDark Waters,Ē but be prepared

to get angry while being scared.

A true story, it tells the tale

of poisonings without a jail.


Stopping these deaths a lawyer tries.

His research reveals many lies

told by DuPont about their work.

Dangers in their chemicals lurk.


He takes on this case and the fight.

Itís not easy to do whatís right.

He and his wife face problems too.

If you were him, what would you do?


Courage and strength are required here.

Persistence helps to conquer fear.

Mark Ruffalo always comes through.

This role offers him something new.


He feels the part and does his best.

The Hulk in him gets needed rest.

Director Haynes moves the film along rather slowly, but thereís lots of complicated scientific information to cover Ė and it canít be understood if presented in a hurry. Although Ruffalo carries the major acting burden, heís helped by Anne Hathaway as his worried wife plus Tim Robbins and Bill Pullman as two sympathetic lawyers.

Dark Waters reveals how greed, corruption and indifference can devastate the environment, cause birth defects plus fatal diseases, and ruin peopleís lives. Itís a very scary story.     

(Released by Focus Features and rated ďPG-13Ē by MPAA.)

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