Mobile movie app Quibi became available on Monday, and When the Street Lights Go On is one of their offerings. Quibi’s hook is that the movies are cut into “quick bites”.
I was able to view the first three “episodes” of Quibi’s coming of age murder mystery When the Street Lights Go On, and as a “Murderino”, I hoped it would hook me in those 29 available minutes. I am happy to say that my hopes were realized.
When the Street Lights Go On is set in Colfax, Illinois, and our narrator is Charlie Chambers (Chosen Jacobs), who was 15 years old in 1995. That’s the year a shocking crime was committed, and the town changed forever.
Chrissy (Nicola Peltz) was one of the prettiest, most popular girls at her high school, and unbeknownst to her classmates and family, she was having a sordid affair with a married man, Mr. Carpenter. Carpenter was the “cool” teacher at school, the one who played Nirvana songs in class the entire day after Kurt Cobain died.
One evening, Carpenter picks up Chrissy in his car, and tells her that he is leaving his wife for her (and it seemed to me that her reaction was a little less than positive). As they sit in the car, a masked man pops up, forcing them to drive into the woods at gun point.
What follows is a tense, uncomfortable scene, when the gunman forces the two to take off their clothes and kiss while standing in front of the car’s headlights. When Mr. Carpenter tries to be all manly and protect Chrissy, the creepy gunman shoots both of them.
The next day, Charlie finds the bodies as he rides his bike through the woods, and the sight affects him strongly; he thinks about it all the time, and even sees visions of Chrissy’s dead body. He has fond memories of Chrissy’s edgy twin sister, Becky, who was a childhood friend. But when he tries to reminisce with Becky, she doesn’t seem to share his memories.
We also meet Detective Grasso (played by Queen Latifah), who is determined to solve the mystery of who murdered Chrissy and Mr. Carpenter. She interviews Chrissy’s boyfriend Brad, along with other suspects in the town.
When the Street Lights Go On is packed with interesting characters played by talented actors, and the story is very suspenseful and intriguing. I am looking forward to finding out what happens next!
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