Secret Smile is an intriguing two-part, made-for-British television thriller that charts the chain of revenge that follows the break up of a casual one-night stand between London architect, Miranda Cotton (Kate Ashfield) and the creepy Brendan Block (David Tennant).
Career-minded Miranda takes a chance on a complete stranger and rapidly lives to regret it as the sociopathic Block smarms and worms his way into the lives of Miranada’s family and friends. Soon her life is a complete nightmare, but Block is so smooth, so amenable that no one–including Miranda’s family–believes that Block is a total psycho. It’s not long before Miranda begins to wonder just what Block is capable of and how far he’s prepared to go to make her pay. But it takes Miranda a while to realize that the manipulative Block is playing with her and that he dictates both the game and the rules. With someone like Block, you either walk away or change the rules. Miranda chooses the latter.
Block as the enigmatic, calculating ex-boyfriend from hell is entirely credible. I did, however, find myself getting rather annoyed with Miranda, and saying things such as, “you idiot” to the screen when Miranda caves and Block scores a point. But my annoyance with Miranda was really just a manifestation of how wrapped up I was in the drama.
The ending was a little implausible, but it was definitely dramatic enough to match the rest of this tale. Based on the novel by Nikki French, the film is directed Christopher Menaul.