Daniel Pyne

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Fracture Review


Weak
It is hardly a reassuring sign when one of the more interesting things in a film is not even sentient. Over the title sequence of Fracture, and in the midst of some of the duller stretches (of these there are many) we see a glittering sort of Rube Goldberg contraption, all shiny metallic tracks and carved wooden wheels, where small glass balls skitter and roll in an elaborately choreographed dance. It's a beautiful piece of elegant machinery and, one hopes, symbolic of the many complex and artfully managed plot twists to come. Instead, what we're given is Anthony Hopkins and Ryan Gosling sleepwalking around each other as they navigate through one of the year's laziest films.

Fracture has no excuse to be so lazy, given the actors at its disposal and a setup that should have made this an easy slam-dunk. Hopkins plays Ted Crawford, an aeronautics engineer who's found out that his wife Jennifer (Embeth Davidtz) is having an affair with police detective Rob Nunally (Billy Burke). Confronting her at home, Crawford shoots her in the head and calmly waits for the cops to arrive. When they do, it's with none other than Nunally at the lead, who's shocked and enraged at finding Jennifer in a pool of blood and Crawford standing there as though nothing had happened. After a quickly-interrupted beating from Nunally, Crawford later confesses and even waives his right to a lawyer. When it's all dropped in the lap of assistant district attorney Willy Beachum (Gosling), the case couldn't seem more airtight, which is good since Beachum can't wait to slip the bonds of lowly civil employment for a well-paying private sector job.

Continue reading: Fracture Review

Where's Marlowe? Review


Good
If you're going to make yet another mockumentary of something, it's good to pick a topic that hasn't been done to death, at least, and that's where Where's Marlowe? manages to succeed. Parroting the private eye genre, with Miguel Ferrer as our Sam Spade wannabe, a documentary crew follows him around until it becomes obvious he is so hapless that he is going to lose his whole business. To salvage the situation, the crew decides to join Ferrer's crew and help him finish his last few cases -- ensuring they still have a movie but breaking the detached and unbiased role of a documentary crew. Up until this point, the movie's a lot of silly fun, goofing on both documentary and P.I. cliches with aplomb. But after this point the movie becomes all about the actual case... alternately meaningless, confusing, and just plain stupid. Where's Marlowe? Who cares?
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Fracture Movie Review

Fracture Movie Review

It is hardly a reassuring sign when one of the more interesting things in a...

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