What starts as an ordinary day for real estate agent Alex (Heston Horwin) quickly spirals out of control. While waiting for prospective clients, he hears gunshots in the distance. By chance he’s able to scare away a hit man, Kellin (Chase Cargill), from killing his target, Marakya (Michaella Russell). Alex ushers Marakya to safety only to discover that now he’s in grave danger. Marakya is a South African woman living in L.A. who unwillingly became part of a dangerous sex trafficking ring that targets young immigrant women. She’s on the run from her immigration lawyer/trafficker Anthony (Taylor Flowers) and his goons and now Alex is too.
Written and directed by Nicholas Woods, Echoes of Violence is an engrossing thriller that will leave you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. It’s got great performances by the three principal leads (Russell, Cargill and Horwin), interesting characters and the pacing is just right. As the mystery unfolds, we learn more about these characters and their backgrounds. I would have liked to have seen Kellin’s meeting with his father pan out a bit differently. And I was curious as to why Marakya refers to South Africa as just Africa. With that said, the movie gives us just the right amount of background information so we can become emotionally invested in these characters without ruining their allure.
I usually steer clear of human trafficking films because some cross over into the realm of conservative propaganda. Echoes of Violence is not that kind of film and the trafficking mostly serves an impetus for the action. However, some viewers might see it as a thriller with an agenda. I encourage you to put any qualms you might have aside and give this one a try.
Echoes of Violence recently premiered at Cinequest.