What would be your worst nightmare? As a self-proclaimed foodie, mine came true after screening Dark. Waters. Apparently, there is a chemical agent (PFOA) in teflon pans (C8) that we have all ingested. How? Remember all those times, you may have accidentally used a metal cooking tool that scraped the bottom of those pans. Well, each time they are scraped and you cook with that pan, there is a huge chance you have probably ingested C8. Alarming, right??!! Imagine how some residents of West Virginia felt when their livestock began dying due to toxic waste being dumped into their river.
Well, that’s why the world needs more heroic human beings like Robert Bilott (Mark Ruffalo), a lawyer who wages a David vs Goliath legal war against corporate chemical giant Dupont. After surprise visit from a couple of West Virginia farmers, one being Wilber Tenant (Bill Camp) begging him to take on their case. To say this move was a conflict of interest for Bilott would be a gross understatement.
Mark Ruffalo as Bilott and Anne Hathaway (Sarah Bilott) are literally giving a career best performances. Ruffalo’s torturous portrayal of a corporate lawyer desperately seeking to ‘do the right thing’ derails his health, his personal life and his career. Standing by her man, Anne Hathaway (Sarah) does her best to be understanding, but that unwavering faith comes at a price. Hathaway and Ruffalo, in my opinion, are often underestimated because they make what they do look tremendously easy. That will all change with Dark Waters, as they are both are tapping into depths we have never seen them go before.
Todd Haynes’ direction is brilliant as he features a palate of mostly muted blue, grey and black to illustrate the dire state of the subject we are dealing with.
Based on a true story, Dark Waters will enlighten every audience member that screens it. For me, it made me think twice before using another teflon pan or pot again in my life. Like so many corporations operating on the greed of making billions of dollars, it would be nice if humanity could be at the forefront just once.
Produced by Focus Features and directed by Todd Haynes, Dark Waters is in theatre right now!