“Dig” is an old-school thriller that exploits the fragile thread which holds the minds of two psychopaths, at the cost of the strained relationship between a father and a daughter. Too much? Well, this is how you will feel when you see the actors trying to become the characters and miserably failing at it. Or, if you are lenient, you will say that the actors did what they could with the characters. Either way, “Dig” doesn’t hit the spot. “Ya dig?”
What Happens In The ‘Dig’ Film?
Scott Brennan and his wife Linda are out in their car looking for their daughter Jane, who has sneaked out of the house for the umpteenth time against their wishes. They arrive at a bar, from which Scott has to literally carry Jane out on his shoulders and into the car. While returning, he is cut off by another car, which adds to Scott’s temper even more. When he stops at a gas station, he finds the same car. He confronts the driver and brings out his hammer to show who the boss really is. As Linda and Jane try to calm Scott down, asking him to get back in the car, the other guy brings out his gun. Scott tries to grab the gun from his hands, and the trigger gets pulled. Linda receives the bullet. And dies. Jane loses her hearing ability. The guy escapes in his car.
Many days have passed since the death of Linda. Scott is trying to figure out a way to get his hands on some money for Jane’s treatment. One day, a guy named Vic arrives at his home salvage shop and wants him to salvage a house for a friend. When Scott denies it, Victor offers him a lot of money straight away. Scott, who is in dire need of money, agrees.
Scott, Jane, and one of Scott’s employees, Pablo, arrive at the location of the house. They need to salvage everything save for the house, which should not have a single mark other than those already present. As they check out the interiors, they encounter a boy named Tommy who has been sleeping there. He is wanted for stealing a car. Jane decides to help him. They give him some food, and Tommy leaves. But before leaving, he gives Jane a necklace that has a small folding knife as its pendant.
The work begins. Scott notices Jane breaking one of the walls with a hammer. He stops her immediately. They then find stashes of cash inside the walls and decide to not call the cops but seal up the wall just as it was with the cash inside it. They decide to call the cops after their work is over. Scott leaves to get some paint and plasters. When he returns, he sees both Jane and Pablo on their knees, hands tied behind their backs and gagged. A guy and a girl, both with masks on, are pointing guns at them. The couple wants whatever is buried underneath the patio. As they talk, Pablo tries to run but is shot and killed. With no other option, Scott decides that the only way to stay alive is to help the couple. So, he volunteers to “dig.” Sometime later, Scott realizes that the guy is none other than Victor, who had come to his store earlier, and that the girl is his girlfriend, Lola. But the question is, what are they up to? What is buried underneath the patio? And will Scott and Jane be able to find a way out of the situation? “Digging” seems to be the way out.
A Father & Daughter
The name of the film “Dig,” in a way, shows how Scott and Jane try to “dig” deep within themselves and recover their strength and affection for each other, something that they had lost after the death of Jane’s mother, Linda. But unfortunately, it takes a life-threatening incident for them to do that.
Scott is driven by anger and applies it to pretty much everything. And it seems that his anger is the reason why Jane used to sneak out of her home (clearly many times). However, it doesn’t mean that Scott doesn’t love his daughter. His love for Jane is pretty evident from the moment they are held at gunpoint to the very end of the film. While Jane, too, shows signs of hatred towards her father, we find it to be natural outcomes of her father’s behavior. While Scott is trying hard to get his daughter’s hearing disability treated, there is a hint of obliviousness between the two, which makes us think that there was never really any real conversation between Scott and his daughter Jane, even before the tragic incident that led to her mother Linda’s death and cost Jane her hearing. This could be a reason why Jane also doesn’t entertain her father’s words. Hence, their “digging” for affection takes so long. And although dramatic, the first word that she utters after being unable to speak for so long is “Dad.” This single word is enough to establish that she has finally made peace with her emotions and has let her bygones with her father be bygones. In this way, she has not only dug out her affection that was buried deep down but, in the process, also buried her hatred that was never of any purpose. Naturally, Scott, who has been having trouble talking to his daughter, finds renewed strength when he hears her call him out as “Dad,” and they together manage to escape from the two psychopaths.
For every hot-headed psychopath, there is always another one who pays attention. And “Dig” is a case in consideration. Towards the middle of the film, Lola tells Jane that Victor was not always this violent; she had to work hard to make him so, i.e., a murderer. Lola was sexually abused by her father, and her mother died when she was little. Or so she says. If what she says is true, then the reason why she wants to kill both Scott and Jane as soon as possible is that she is jealous of Scott’s love for his daughter Jane, something Lola never had from her father. The absence of love and a past full of sexual abuse have taken a heavy toll on her and have cost her her sanity. But if what she says is false, then she is a downright criminal (who may or may not have a different tragic past than the one she tells Jane). Be that as it may, Victor is the sane of the two, who has been deeply influenced by Lola, who manipulated not just him but also his brother and father. Who knows, if Scott hadn’t sparked doubts in Victor’s mind about Lola, she might have even killed him before escaping with the money. Victor is the one who actually decides to wait and listen to what Scott has to say about digging the ground and goes with logic and reason. And this is clearly visible when he, despite having reasons to shoot Scott and Jane multiple times, restrains from it. However, we cannot blame Lola completely for influencing Victor, as it is not possible unless some of the madness was already present, lying dormant. Surprisingly, even after Jane stabs Lola in the neck, Victor doesn’t shoot either Jane or Scott. Perhaps Victor’s sanity could have been brought back if only he had been made to do some “digging” of his own. But there was no time for that, thanks to Lola, who was always impatient. She never gave Victor any time to think before acting (until now).
‘Dig’ Ending Explained: Do Scott and Jane Survive?
At the end of the film, Scott and Jane try to escape but are caught (for the second time). While Victor gets hold of Scott, Lola gets on top of Jane, who is on the ground. She is about to shoot Jane when Jane manages to use the knife in her necklace (gifted to her by Tommy) to stab Lola in the neck. As Victor attends to a dying Lola, Scott and Jane try to escape in a car. But before Scott can start the car, Victor pulls out Scott and hits him hard multiple times. But it is Scott who gets the better of him and pushes him in front of the car. Jane then starts the car and runs it over Victor, taking him along and crashing into a homestead, killing him. Scott and Jane then leave the place, hurt but alive, and after a long time, as a family.
“Dig” could explored more of the relationship between Scott and his daughter Jane, as well as the relationship between Victor and Lola. But one can only do so much within an hour and a half. While the film does manage to hold its ground, it leaves us wanting more. And it is up to the viewer to decide whether being “left wanting more” is a good thing or a bad thing.