• Eye Of The Storm (1991)

     

    Honestly said, this movie is a rather mediocre and even quite boring thriller with the usual scenario. There is not much tension or action in the movie and there are many lengths. Many people talk about twists and surprises but anyone that has already seen a couple of movies of the same genre won't be surprised at all. I was stunned reading about a twist in the film on this site and looked up on the internet if I had missed a detail but in fact the so called surprise was a clear fact for me right on from the beginning so that I didn't even realize it could have been a surprising element of the movie. Don't expect anything outstanding, memorable or intense in this flick.

    This movie steals many elements from some classic suspense flicks like "Psycho" or "Blue Velvet" without reaching the intensity of those original masterpieces. A part of the human and tragic story of the two brothers, this movie adds nothing interesting to the genre at all. The plot is very thin, the dialogues are sometimes very artificial, the filming is rather old fashioned and some elements like the desert storm are completely unnecessary and add nothing to the main plot. The whole thing truly gets ridiculous in the end when the final showdown almost fails to find an end. I'm a little bit surprised that actors like Hopper and Boyle who have worked with the "crème de la crème" of Hollywood writers and directors have accepted acting in this weak flick.

    What keeps me away from giving an even lower rating to this movie can be resumed in a couple of points. First of all, the opening scene is rather heavy to digest and a good way to kick this movie off. We have the true highlight right in the beginning. Another good point is the acting of some of the characters. The blind brother is well and emotionally played and the weird villain is a signature role for a great actor like Dennis Hopper. The other two main characters do a rather weak job in here though and the interactions between them are poor. I was negatively surprised by Lara Flynn Boyle that did a great job at almost the same time in the "Twin Peaks" series. Another good aspect is the emotional background story of the two brothers and their tragic fate.

    I really can't suggest this film to fans of psycho thrillers or suspense flicks. This movie isn't even worth to be bought at a low price or rented at your local gas station. I am happy I only saw it on television and had at least some more or less entertaining hours in a relaxed atmosphere. Go for any other suspense movie I have mentioned in my reviews if your looking for a better genre flick.

     

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  • 2:22 (2008)

     

    I bought this movie at a low price because I thought that the plot idea was intriguing and because Val Kilmer was starring in this flick.

    In the end, many great ideas and a lot of potential wasn't well used. The title seems to underline the importance of a certain time that was finally completely redundant. The connection between several events in the hotel like the suicide of an old man and, the strange sex scenes between a television star and his bodyguard and the meeting between one of the gangsters and the ex-wife of the investigating police officer. Many scenes are rather redundant, especially in the first thirty minutes or so when the thieves are introduced, sometimes is a completely boring way and sometimes in a crazy and exaggerated way. When the thieves get out of the hotel you expect an intriguing investigation story or some fatal encounters or coincidences but instead of continuing on a high level after the intriguing hotel sequences, the movies slows down and goes nowhere before a dramatic and tragical conclusion kicks off.

    Sometimes, I think that the movie wants to be too many things at the same time. For a thriller, there is not enough tension in it and not enough surprises as we quickly now what will happen in the next one and a half hour. For a tragic drama, the characters are not profound and touching enough, even in the fatal ending. For an action movie, there are not enough special effects a part of the shooting scenes. For a comedy movie, there are only a few entertaining slapstick scenes that happen in the hotel. The problem is that the movie has many ups and downs and all the mentioned elements are used in a rather incoherent way without any dominating genre. The mixture doesn't create an original melting pot but rather a strange and mixed up potpourri that fails to work. Let's also mention that the great Val Kilmer has only two little scenes and a redundant role of a paranoid diamond dealer and is one of many unnecessary sidekicks that add nothing to the main plot even if you exactly expect that in the beginning and his role could have rated up this movie by much.

    In the end, we have a diversified and entertaining movie here that has some good ideas but a bad executions and too many ups and downs. The good elements are the entertaining hotel sequences and the diversified soundtrack. One could have done a movie of three hours with all the different characters but chose to concentrate on only a couple of elements that are randomly chosen.

    The ending is disappointing and too simple. The acting is too wooden and the characters itself not profound enough. The plot scratches on an interesting surface but doesn't go deep enough. Many sidekicks turn out to be completely unnecessary. There are too many missed occasions and wrong expectations in this movie. The movie is worth being watched once because of its interesting story basis but that's more than enough.

     

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  • Giallo (2009)

     

    This thriller attracted my attention because of its beautiful location in Torino and the big names of director Dario Argento and actor Adrien Brody. I shouldn't have trusted in those names as this movie is a completely ordinary thriller in every sense of the word. The killer is a poor and isolated guy that has been pushed around and bullied in his childhood and hates beautiful women that he kidnaps, tortures and kills to destroy their fatal beauty. The inspector is also an isolated guy with a dark past that desperately tries to find the murderer. The sister of one of the kidnapped young ladies follows his and they are soon somewhat forced to work together. Honestly said, we have all seen such a story line somewhere else and in a better way.

    On the positive side, the movie is entertaining enough to watch it until the very end. Adrien Brody acts very well and convinces as an inspector with a dark past. The location of Torino is well chosen and gives a certain kind of charm to the movie.

    On the negative side, this movie is highly predictable. The identity of the killer is revealed to fast. There also some flagrant lacks of logic in the movie. The inspector acts in the most stupid way in the hospital to attract the attention of the inspector. The inspector acts in a disturbingly slow and stupid way and the sister of one of the victims even has the better ideas than him. Why didn't he try for example to contact the taxi organizations of the city to ask them to make a list of the drivers that have been working at 9:30 a.m. next to the fashion centre? He could have also asked them about a strangely acting guy with a yellow skin instead of acting strangely at a nearby hospital where he meets the killer because of a strange and not really convincing coincidence? At some point, I also have the impression that the director didn't know in what kind of direction his movie should go. In the beginning, the brutal scenes with the Japanese are cut off but in some other scenes, there is suddenly a higher amount of brutality. Another completely illogical scene is that one of the victims suddenly gets back to life and is able to talk quite a lot before she dies. After being cut all over the body, being washed in a high amount of bleach and put into a well isolated plastic bag, this event is nearly impossible. The most stupid thing about the movie is its ending. If they would have cut off the very last scene, the movie would have finished on something more original but the way it eventually really finishes is stupid and doesn't let us know anything about the final development of the main characters and also seems quite pointless.

    I am really generous if I still give five points to the movie as it didn't have much action, tension, dark humour or anything special. It simply is an ordinary but somewhat entertaining movie with an acceptable acting and an interesting location to underline the positive points. You can watch it once but I wouldn't suggest a purchase at all.

     

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  • Unknown (2011)

     

    This intriguing psycho thriller really offers nothing quite interesting or new to any one that has seen "XIII", "The Bourne Trilogy", "Wrong identity" and similar movies. A man suffers from amnesia and is looking for his identity and it is quite quickly obvious what his secrets are if you happen to know the mentioned movies.

    This being said, the movie is still very entertaining and well acted even though there are many clichés. The rich professor must be helped by a poor illegal immigrant girl and the bad boys seem always to be perfectly organized and chase the haunted without pity. The usual car chases and execution scenes underline the lack of originality of the movie. The only thing that distinguishes this movie from many others is the fact that it takes place in Berlin and that many well known and promising German actors got a few roles in this movie and take their chances to convince a larger public. As I happen to be from Germany, I found it interesting to see such a polished psycho thriller take place at famous and infamous locations of the German capital and the movie gives a very little glimpse at the culture of this city by showing its beautiful and ugly sides. This movie creates a certain wanders lust to go and discover the city and makes a good publicity for the country.

    After all, once you accepted the weak and ripped off story, you really get well entertained and see a solid acting and nice shooting places. I wouldn't suggest to go to the cinema for this movie as it is quite overrated and I wouldn't buy a copy of it in a couple of months, but I would really suggest to rent this movie for a night if you feel for it and in that way, you won't be disappointed if you slow your expectations down as I did. If you found the main idea interesting but you didn't like the movie, go for the ones I have mentioned in the beginning that are fairly better.

     

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  • Blue Velvet (1986)

     

    "Blue velvet" is probably the movie that is the easiest one to approach by still coming quite close to the typical trademarks of David Lynch's art of directing. It reunites the accessibility of "Dune" and "Wild at heart" with the weird surrealism of "Lost highway" or "Mulholland Drive". This movie is one of the rare ones by David Lynch that is possible to be understood with the first try even though there are some mysterious and uncovered hints and elements throughout this interesting flick.

    This movie gives us already a glimpse at what we could later on expect from David Lynch as the movie is settled in a small town where many strange people live beneath the surface of peaceful boredom just like in "Twin Peaks". The movie has almost the approach of a thriller and gets quite fast interesting in comparison to the rather slow paced approaches of most of David Lynch's movies. This movie isn't as intense, surreal and surprising as many of his other works are, but it is filled with tension and dominated by a strong acting by Isabella Rossellini, Kyle MacLachlan and especially the legendary Dennis Hopper. The charismatic acting of those three cornerstones of the movie makes this flick work and makes me pardon the fact that the movie is not as imaginary as one should expect from such a great director. Some secondary actors like Laura Dern or Jack Nance also do a great job as usual.

    To sum it all up, this is a rather weak movie considering the other works of David Lynch and a little bit too general and mainstream orientated but it is nevertheless an entertaining psycho thriller with some stunning acting. I would recommend this movie to any fan of psycho thrillers without any hesitation. But I wouldn't recommend this movie to someone who would like to enter the universe of David Lynch as there are surely better choices such as "Mulholland Drive".

     

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