Thrillers are like the box-in-a-box gag gift. You open a box only to reveal another box, and you keep opening the box until you find the real gift. Making a good thriller is all about managing how much fun you have opening the endless stream of boxes.
Writer/director Jason Noto’s Beyond The Night opens with a young veteran Raymond (Zane Holtz) walking into a hospital room just in time for his wife Maisie’s (Caitlin Mehner) final living moments. Ray is now alone with their only son Lawrence (Azhy Robertson). Lawrence sports a rather noticeable birthmark covering half of his face. The two must leave the city and head back to Maisie’s small rural home for the funeral.
Upon arrival, Ray and Lawrence are greeted by Ray’s sister Caroline (Tammy Blanchard), who works as a hometown police officer and encourages Ray to be strong for his son. Ray’s service has kept him from being a fulltime father.
“…a flood of memories come up about a life Lawrence could never have experienced.”
Years ago, Ray and Maisie left the small town to start a family. Ray’s return conjures up mixed feelings. First, Ray scares the living hell into a girl for taking pictures of his son’s birthmark. Then there are those who impatiently wait for the two to return to the city.