By MARK VIOLA | Thursday, January 02, 2020 | 5:54 AM
I remember when the nightly news began running stories about the alleged dangers of Teflon, the non-stick material found on just about every pan in our kitchen. For me, it was just a blip on my radar, the only lasting memory was the idea that we shouldn’t heat the pans too hot.
Now, the dark and sordid tale of how those reports came to be can be seen in the new film “Dark Waters,” starring Mark Ruffalo (“Avengers: Endgame”), who also served as producer and was one of the driving forces behind getting the movie made.
The film is directed by Todd Haynes (“Carol”) and is based on the New York Times Magazine article, “The Lawyer Who Became DuPont’s Worst Nightmare.”
The story follows corporate defense attorney Robert Bilott (Ruffalo), who in 1998 has just made partner in his prestigious law firm that specializes in defending chemical companies. One day, he is visited by Wilbur Tennant (Bill Camp, “Joker”) a farmer from a small town in Pennsylvania who knows his grandmother. He claims a nearby Dupont facility has polluted his farm, leading to the deaths of most of his cattle.
Ruffalo was phenomenal as a crusading reporter in “Spotlight,” and he plays an equally passionate lawyer in “Dark Waters.” Although he is the glue that keeps this film together, he is joined by a very talented cast that also includes Tim Robbins (“The Shawshank Redemption”), Bill Pullman (“Independence Day”), Victor Garber (“Titanic”) and Anne Hathaway (“Ocean’s Eight”).