Monday, May 17, 2021

Netflix's WHAT LIES BELOW (2021): A Teen Touched By Her Mother's Lover

I heard about What Lies Below (2021), "the wild No. 1 movie on Netflix", from the "Sleeps With The Fishes" episode of Slate's Culture Gabfest podcast. Here's Netflix's plot summary:
Back home at her lake house, [Liberty] a teenager begins to suspect that a sinister force lurks beneath the surface of [John] her mother's too-perfect new lover. 

Stephen Metcalf mentioned on the podcast that Liberty's, "[...] age is never specified, I think, in order to keep some of the movie's genuine creepiness at bay." However, IMDb clarified that Liberty was 16. 

The movie opened with Liberty peering over Exploring Lost Worlds to peek at the camp counselor before an even younger camper snapped a picture of Liberty's cleavage. "Perv!"

Upon returning to the lake house, Liberty watched John, her mother's lover, emerge from the lake in barely a speedo. Impressed and passive-aggressively "groomed", Liberty whispered, "Holy crap." Then Liberty's mother overshared with her teen daughter, "I know right? I'm riding him constantly."

While John hugged Liberty's mother, he kino escalated Liberty's shoulder. (Would feminists consider John's behavior a fatherly touch or grooming? I say, at a minimum, passive-aggressive grooming.) Consequently, the teen masturbated while touching the spot that John rubbed. #pun

However, even the most open nympholept\ephebophile would agree that John's sniffing the shower curtain while Liberty showered was "creepy". 

I won't spoil the ending, but let's say that, in terms of his relationship with the mother and the daughter, John shared the same fate as R., the famous writer in Nabokov's Transparent Things.

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