The initial set-up and imagery of Confession alludes to an unfolding mystery that, on a surface level, projects a level of intrigue. Victor Strong (Stephen Moyer), bleeding from a gunshot wound and writing an apology letter to his daughter, is preparing for a confession of sorts to an unsuspecting Father Peter (Colm Meaney).
Confessions by their very nature are often not the easiest dialogues to have, so it only makes sense that Victor is expecting that his will upset Father Peter. The fact that he’s also armed and insisting on all the church doors to be locked only adds to the anxiety, and when it’s known that there’s a third person waiting in the wings – or, more correctly, hiding in the church intent on overhearing their exchange – the film’s sense of dread is momentarily palpable.
But, despite committed work from Meaney and Moyer, the former alternating between concern and bewilderment, the latter executing unhinged desperation, Confession is never able to elevate itself beyond the most simplistic of terms. Logic and any sense of intelligence is so often void throughout, and with so much of the film basically being a two-man act between Victor and Peter, it’s a shame that any seriousness surrounding religion and connecting the film’s unfolding plot with something of a philosophical nature is forgone.
Failing to be much of an investing thriller or a think-piece, Confession solely rests on Meaney and Moyer, and both actors do what they can with familiar material. There’s so much more here that deserved to be explored, but writer/director David Beton (The Banishing) seems unsure of wanting to take such a risk, opting to settle for genre mediocrity instead.
Confession is available now on VOD in the United States and to buy and/or rent on DVD/Digital in Australia.