Netflix’s ‘The Whole Truth’ (2021) Review: The Monster Within

'The Whole Truth' Review: The Monster Within

‘The Whole Truth’ is a mystery horror thriller from Thailand that is available to stream on Netflix starting December 2.

This feature is directed by Wisit Sasanatieng from a screenplay penned by Abishek J. Bajaj. It stars Sompob Benjathikul, Sadanont Durongkaweroj, Steven Isarapong, Thasorn Klinnium, Mac Nattapat Nimjirawat, Keetapat Pongrue, Nicole Theriault. Tarika Tidatid and Sutatta Udomsilp.

‘The Whole Truth’ details the story of two siblings Pim and Patt. When their mom is hospitalized after a car accident, the two learn that they indeed do have grandparents they are not aware of and haven’t heard of or met before.

While their mom lies in a coma at the hospital, their grandparents take the youngsters in, and immediately the two move to the new house, strange things start to happen.

First, they stumble upon a mysterious hole on their grandparent’s house wall that no one except the two teenagers can see. When they peep through it, they can see images of a young disabled girl who keeps vomiting blood.

The old lady is determined to see Patt, who has one weak leg and must walk with the help of a leg brace get strong. So, she keeps giving him a glass of milk which she insists he should drink.

Soon Patt starts falling sick and vomiting blood, but the grandma won’t let his sister Pim take him to the hospital, insisting that he just needs a glass of milk and some bed rest and he would be back to excellent health this is because sweet grandma is hiding a grim secret.

'The Whole Truth' Review: The Monster Within

When the mom wakes up from the coma and learns that her kids are staying with their grandparents, she panics and runs away from the hospital, insisting her children are in danger. Meanwhile, strange events continue to happen, and the grandfather, an ex-cop guided by anger, takes the law into his own hands and commits an awful atrocity.

At the end of the movie, it is revealed that things are not as they seemed to the kids. Sweet dementia-ridden grandma isn’t as loving and innocent as she looks. The mom, too, isn’t the saint everyone thinks, and the grandpa, well, his uncontrolled rage becomes his downfall, and at the end of it all, things quickly spiral out of control.

The movie’s introduction is fantastic; it sets up the mood with an excellent combination of cleverly placed visuals, coupled with fantastic camera work that zooms through the hole where the narrative emanates, revealing layer after layer of the horrifying events.

The accompanying music too intensifies the tension and builds up the anticipation for the audience.

When the movie starts, it looks like an ordinary drama with a mom with her teenage kids, a promotion at work, the daughter running against a rival teammate for the captain position, and a disabled young boy being bullied and blackmailed. All looks pretty ordinary.

One interesting tiny thing, though, is that it is a bit contradictory when the cheerleading coach tells the girls that they will be voting to choose their next team leader but then goes to ask Pim on the side to ask her whether she would be willing to continue being the team captain for another year even though, that decision lay with the team.

It is also pretty weird that despite it raining heavily outside in one of the scenes, Pim and Patt’s house curtains are not drawn, which doesn’t really resonate with what one would expect in a real-life situation.

The sound effects, together with a consistent monotonous humming that accompany the shots giving the audience a tour around the house during the night, are good enough to give the audience the creeps setting the mood for the terror set to unfold later on in the movie.

The writing is fantastic. The storyline is entirely unexpected, and the path the narrative takes is not an obvious one. What the characters think as real isn’t but their conscious questioning their past deeds.

However, the manifestation of the alternate wormhole is not explained in the narrative as one cant tell whether it was a hallucination, a vision, or it really happened.

The direction is excellent as well. The way the story is organized and paced is brilliant. Slow burns alternating with intense freaky stuff building up, then slowing down again before picking up as the film progresses to a climax.

The weirdness and strangeness surrounding the grandparents do tell the audience that there is something sinister behind these serious nice-looking oldies, coupled with the fact that their mom never told the kids that they have grandparents.

The performances are okay, and especially the grandmother is fantastic. Switching from a sweet, caring old lady to a strict one who wouldn’t stand any misbehavior and then to a deranged woman who can murder someone the next minute. 

The troubled person battling dementia comes out excellent. What’s more perplexing is how it all of a sudden goes away, and she apparently can’t remember a thing.

Props to the grandfather actor too, as his looks straight away tell exactly what kind of a person he is. However, his voice sounds a bit exaggerated. Since it is dubbed, it may be a matter of being lost in translation.

Pim and Patt are excellent as well, their confusion is fantastic, and the way they look at each other with questionable eyes is endearing. 

The bizarre moments in ‘The Whole Truth’ aren’t bone-chilling per se. As most of the time, it is just the ghost girl puking blood that is seen. There are no jump scares or nightmare instilling circumstances that will make someone cringe.

The horror moments, though, are intensified by the music and the sound effects, which keep the viewers at the edge of their seats.

The use of the blue and green shades brings out the effects that something abnormal and terrifying is bound to happen to the characters as these hues dominate most of the scenes.

Most scenes take place indoors; hence in terms of location, there isn’t much diversification.

There is a lot of cursing and use of profanities hence ‘The Whole Truth’ isn’t suitable for underage kids or those adults who are not comfortable with such language.

‘The Whole Truth’ isn’t really the greatest horror movie that audiences have ever seen, talking about the Conjuring Franchise, but it is a fantastic watch nevertheless. The acting, story, editing, direction, and music are all nicely put together, bringing about a great movie.

SCORE: 7/10

  • Hrvoje Milakovic

    Hrvoje, based in Osijek, Croatia, with a Master's degree from the Zagreb University of Applied Sciences, is a co-founder of Incomera, a media company that has launched several entertainment sites including Fiction Horizon, Game Horizon, and Anime Horizon. He is also a co-owner of...