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Elizabeth Olsen shines in Love & Death crime drama: A review

Elizabeth Olsen shines in Love & Death crime drama: A review

The true-crime genre has become increasingly popular in recent years, with a slew of new shows and documentaries premiering on streaming services. Love & Death is one such series that has garnered a lot of attention for its unique take on the true story of Candy Montgomery. The show delves into the complex web of relationships and motivations that led to Montgomery's shocking crime, providing a nuanced and gripping exploration of one woman's descent into darkness.

Background and Overview of Love & Death

Love & Death is a limited series created by David E. Kelley, the mastermind behind popular shows like Big Little Lies and The Undoing. The series is based on the book "Evidence of Love" by John Bloom and Jim Atkinson, which tells the true story of the murder of Betty Gore by her friend Candy Montgomery in Wylie, Texas, in 1980. The show follows Montgomery's journey from a typical suburban housewife to a murderer, exploring the various factors that led to her crime.


The cast of Love & Death is led by Elizabeth Olsen, who delivers a stunning performance as Candy Montgomery. Olsen portrays Candy as a complex and multifaceted character, balancing her suburban housewife persona with her darker, more dangerous side. The supporting cast includes Jesse Plemons as Candy's husband Pat, Patrick Fugit as Betty's husband Allan, and Jack Huston as the lead investigator in the case. Each actor brings depth and nuance to their roles, creating a fully-realized world that draws the viewer in.

Plot Summary

The series opens with the murder of Betty Gore, a mother of two who is killed with an axe in her own home. The police quickly focus their attention on Candy Montgomery, a friend of Betty's who has a complicated history with her. As the investigation unfolds, we see flashbacks to Candy's life leading up to the murder, including her troubled marriage, her affair with a local pastor, and her strained relationship with Betty.

As the show progresses, we see Candy become increasingly unhinged, struggling to keep up with the demands of her double life. Meanwhile, the police investigation heats up, and Candy finds herself in the middle of a high-stakes game of cat and mouse. Ultimately, the show builds to a tense and shocking conclusion that will leave viewers on the edge of their seats.



The performances in Love & Death are a major highlight of the series. Elizabeth Olsen delivers an Emmy-worthy performance as Candy Montgomery, bringing depth and complexity to the role. Jesse Plemons is equally impressive as Candy's husband Pat, capturing the turmoil and confusion of a man who is caught in the middle of a nightmare. Patrick Fugit and Jack Huston also deliver solid performances as the grieving husband and determined investigator, respectively.

Writing and Direction

The writing and direction of Love & Death are both top-notch. David E. Kelley has crafted a tight and suspenseful storyline that keeps the viewer guessing until the very end. The show expertly balances the various elements of the story, including the investigation, the relationships, and the psychological aspects of Candy's character. The direction by Lesli Linka Glatter is equally impressive, with the camera work and pacing adding to the overall tension and atmosphere of the show.

Cinematography and Music

The cinematography and music in Love & Death are also noteworthy. The show has a distinct visual style, with moody lighting and expertly-framed shots that add to the overall atmosphere of the show. The music is also well-chosen, with a mix of haunting and upbeat tracks that complement the various moods of the story.

Themes and Analysis

Love & Death explores a number of themes and ideas throughout its run. The show examines the nature of love and obsession, as well as the pressures and expectations of suburban life. It also explores the effects of trauma and the lengths that people will go to in order to protect themselves and their loved ones. The show offers a nuanced and complex analysis of the events surrounding the murder, refusing to simplify the story or provide easy answers.

Accuracy to the Real Events

One of the key questions surrounding Love & Death is how accurate it is to the real events of the murder. While the show takes some creative liberties with the story, it generally stays true to the facts of the case. The show also includes interviews with real people who were involved in the case, adding an extra layer of authenticity to the story.

Reception and Critics' Reviews

Love & Death has received widespread critical acclaim since its premiere. Critics have praised the show for its gripping storyline, strong performances, and nuanced analysis of the events. The show has also generated a lot of buzz on social media, with viewers praising the show for its suspenseful plot and stunning visuals.

Comparisons to Other Crime Dramas

Love & Death is just the latest in a long line of crime dramas that have captivated audiences in recent years. The show has drawn comparisons to other popular crime shows like The Undoing and Sharp Objects, which also explore the dark underbelly of suburban life. However, Love & Death stands out for its unique take on the true story of Candy Montgomery, which provides a fresh perspective on the genre.

Impact on Society and Culture

True crime has become a cultural phenomenon in recent years, with podcasts, documentaries, and TV shows dedicated to exploring real-life crimes and their impact on society. Love & Death is just the latest example of this trend, and it is sure to have an impact on popular culture in the coming months. The show provides a nuanced and complex analysis of the events surrounding the murder, raising important questions about love, obsession, and the pressures of suburban life.


In conclusion, Love & Death is a gripping and suspenseful crime drama that is sure to captivate audiences. The show boasts a strong cast, tight writing, and stunning visuals, and it offers a unique and nuanced perspective on the true story of Candy Montgomery. The show raises important questions about love, obsession, and the pressures of suburban life, and it is sure to have an impact on popular culture in the coming months.

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