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I spend way too much time at the theaters.
I'm a slave to the Hollywood Visionaries.  God help me.


Directed by: Phillip Noyce

Written by: Jeremy Iacone
(book adaption, from the novel by Jeffrey Deaver) 

Starring: Denzel Washington, Angelina Jolie,
Ed O'Neill, Michael Rooker, Queen Latifah

My Advice: Go collect yourself a ticket

Rating: out of

It's clear from the first few moments of this thriller that Lincoln Rhyme (Washington) is the cream of the uniformed crop. A forensics investigator for the NYPD, his many accomplishments have be recognized and lauded by appreciative peers and his career future is bright with promise. In fact, it appears things for him just couldn't get any better. A shame it can always get worse. After a near-fatal accident, Rhymes finds himself a quadriplegic and confined to a bed in his computerized loft. He also is set upon by seizures which threaten to leave him brain dead and, after several years of fearing a life as a vegetable, he makes peace with himself and arranges the necessary assistance for his "final transition."

Enter a beautiful street cop (Jolie). Fearful of any emotional attachments and unable to commit she transfers her displaced passion to her life on the streets. It's her beleaguered street cop that stumbles across a murder with all the markings of a clearly demented serial killer. Brought together with Rhyme by a department that seeks to stop a potential bloodbath in it's tracks, they essentially put her body together with his mind in the hope of solving a potentially disastrous mystery.

Not taking into account the many prior critics who have served this up as a mere side dish of movie fare, I have to go on record as saying I enjoyed this film. Washington is a phenomenal actor whose talent is immeasurable. Unable to use anything to define Rhyme other than expression and strength of his voice, he ultimately makes him a man to contend with. And Jolie? It's astonishing to me a woman so beautiful can actually make you see past the aesthetics of her features and allow her to breathe life into such a gritty character.

My only disappointment in the film was a plot potential unrealized. Jolie's character clearly comes into this film with tremendous emotional baggage, which remains packed throughout the film. Michael Rooker, as a meddling senior officer, is flat and undesirable but only because he is playing by the book and we are never given his motivations for such unbending rigidity. In the movie's defense, however, it can't be easy to pack everything into such a small time frame. I won't hold this against it.

Although I was slightly disappointed with the ending - the general confusion of realizing who the killer was and why he had done the things he had done left me baffled - I enjoyed this film. If you can get past the fact you spend more time struggling in coming to grips with the finale then you do enjoying the rest of what could have been a greatly crafted movie, you'll enjoy it as well. Overall it's exciting and tense, shocking and graphic. Well, worth the price of admission in my eyes.


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