Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Home Video with Abe: Faces in the Crowd (Capsule Review)

Faces in the Crowd
Directed by Julian Magnat
Released on DVD October 25, 2011

Serial killer movies have the potential to be extremely terrific, but can also be truly terrible. “Faces in the Crowd” puts a spin on the genre by outfitting its heroine Anna (Milla Jovovich) with a condition known as prosopagnosia, or face blindness, which puts her in the unfortunate position of not being able to recognize the killer that she and only she should be able to identify. It also means, rather lamentably, that the movie devotes far more attention to finding multiple actors who look remarkably similar to each other to play one particular role. The movie constructed around that is poorly written and highly trite. It’s obvious from the start that Julian McMahon’s impatient detective Kerrest will fall for Anna, and none of the other characters in the film will be of any consequence at all. The film’s big climax is almost comical in its badness, and there’s no saving grace to be found. Jovovich is not a strong actress, but the truth of the matter is that it’s not her fault that the movie falls flat. McMahon is capable of better, and should really be doing more with “Nip/Tuck” on his resume. There are ways to take a popular concept and liven it up, but having a protagonist identify men by their rear ends because their faces keep changing isn’t it.


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