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  • Angela Allyn

THE MESS YOU LEAVE BEHIND unwinds skillfully

If you like small town crime dramas like MARE OF EASTWOOD, THE MESS YOU LEAVE BEHIND is a good fit for you. Based on Carlos Montero’s award winning novel, MESS tells the intertwined story of two literature teachers separated by fate.

Inma Cuesta is beguiling as Raquel, a woman who returns to teach in the small town in which her husband was raised, the type of community where every knows everything about everybody. Barbara Lennie is the inspiring and sexy teacher she is succeeding. And Arón Piper who achieved great fame as a gay teen in the Netflix hit ELITE is again terrific, this time as the tortured youth with a painful secret who torments them both.

The parallel stories are cleverly intertwined, and the production values and sets are gorgeous. The large cast is excellent, and the pain of high school students struggling with so many pressures – sexuality, relationships, and the impeding pressures of adulthood – are all terrific.

There are many twists and turns which will keep your stomach knotted as the truth emerges, but in the end, I found MESS to be a satisfying meal.

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