Netflix’s latest thriller, Dear Child has all the appeal of a straight-from-the-headlines story. When an unknown woman (Kim Riedle) is struck by a car in the woods late one night, a 13-year-old missing persons case is reopened. As emergency workers scramble to save her life, the mystery deepens as staff starts speaking with the strange little girl who accompanied her in the ambulance, who describes her home as something eerily dungeon-like. With dark and twisting themes that bring the critically acclaimed film Room to mind, the six-episode series spins a dramatic story that Netflix promises will keep viewers riveted until the last minute.
Is the story in Dear Child true?
Though the drama smacks of a possible reality, it’s not actually pulled from headlines. The series is based on the international best-selling German novel, Liebes Kind. Author Romy Hausmann keeps her stories twisting by abstaining from “plotting” the process of planning out a story’s trajectory. She says she finds her initial premise and then bases every move on how a character “should behave next, what is realistic, and above all: How would I behave in this situation?”
Her process created a believable narrative, one that Dear Child director and head writer Isabel Kleefeld, “read in one night.” She was enraptured by the story, “The material fascinated me immediately. [It] is an exciting game with reality, a puzzle that the audience can always add to and reassemble. It is the story of a crime that has many victims, directly or indirectly.”
Dear Child is now streaming on Netflix.