“The Lost Daughter” is the directorial debut of Maggie Gyllenhaal, whose first work as a filmmaker demonstrates her ability to garner amazing performances from her cast.
Gyllenhaal is a clearly an actor’s director. Alas, this is a repellent film with excellent performances, which you can either take as a warning and the backhanded compliment that it is.
Olivia Colman plays Leda, a single woman on a holiday in Greece. We’re initially unsure why she’s there, who she is and what it is she left behind. A series of vague, intermittent flashbacks suggest Leda has an awful secret in her past, though this plotline is addressed later.
The first act portrays Leda’s demeanor, as she is both pleasant and private but also standoffish and odd. The caretaker who shows her to her room (Ed Harris, always in top form) comes across as friendly and lonely, which Leda ignores, until…