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First Look Review - GOODBYE HONEY

goodbye honey review
A trucker comes to the aid of a woman fleeing an abductor.

Review by Sue Finn

Directed by: Max Strand

Starring: Pamela Jayne Morgan, Juliette Alice Gobin, Peyton Michelle Edwards, Paul C. Kelly, Rafe Soule

goodbye honey poster

A distressed woman makes an escape from some sort of basement lair; meanwhile a truck driver, Dawn, is struggling to stay awake as she bombs down the dark freeway. Eventually she gives up and pulls into Chocohan State Park, NY to eat a late night salad in the cab of her ‘Nates Haul-N-Go’ truck.

She updates her client on the status of the trip before attempting some shut-eye, but she is awakened by disturbing sounds outside.

Another distressed woman approaches the truck asking Dawn for water and to call the police. Getting off on the wrong foot, things are tense when she drops and breaks Dawn's phone, and then climbs into the truck insisting on ‘help’.

goodbye honey review

They form an uneasy truce as Dawn agrees to take her to a police station as the woman, Phoebe, explains she was kidnapped four months prior and kept captive ever since. She finally managed to escape and needs to report the crime to the police.

Things take a turn for the worst when Dawn loses her keys and Phoebe panics; she is rightfully terrified that her kidnapper will come across them there in the park.


They end up hiding in the back of the truck, where Dawn asks for the lowdown on what happened to Phoebe and how she ended up imprisoned in someone’s basement for months.

Before the explanation can get any kind of headway however, they are stumbled upon by two druggie knuckleheads who make things worse for the women and engage in a little casual humiliation of Dawn as she attempts to bargain with them for their phone.

goodbye honey review

She gets angry at Phoebe for some unknown reason, who appeases her by telling her the kidnap story. It seems some teen hijinks led to a death, which in turn imprisoned an embittered man who escaped and turned the tables on young Phoebe. This man was her kidnapper and he’s still after her; and now, Dawn is also firmly in the crosshairs.


Essentially a two-hander, this debut effort from writer/director Max Strand (co-written with Todd Rawiszer) is a tense affair that makes fine use of its limited budget and confined locations. There are some genuine shocks and while not all of it works, the majority of it does, and well enough to forgive the clunkiness of some of the plot machinations.

The acting is also well above average across the board with the two leads - Juliette Alice Gobin as Phoebe and Pamela Jayne Morgan as Dawn - doing the majority of the heavy lifting, and succeeding in giving us characters we can believe in.

goodbye honey review

On the negative side of things, the script feels somewhat episodic and sometimes the nonsensical behaviour (mostly at the beginning) is distancing, but it is still a unique and interesting story with a solid and satisfying finale.

Midway through my viewing a friend came into the room and was transfixed from the moment she glanced at the movie. If that isn’t the sign of a compelling film than I don’t know what is.

Well worth flagging down.

Goodbye Honey is on US VOD from May 11th. A UK/ROI release has yet to be announced.



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