DVD Reviews | Jun 21st, 2005
Starring Aaron Eckhart, Ben Kingsley, Carrie-Anne Moss, Kevin Chamberlin, Brady Coleman, Frank Collison, Nicole DeHuff, Aaron Donahue, Buddy Joe Hooker, William Mapother, Julian Reyes
Written By: Zak Penn, Billy Ray
Directed By: E. Elias Merhige
Buy on Amazon.com
“Suspect Zero” is a truly shocking crime thriller. And by ‘shocking’, I mean ‘shockingly boring’.
The beginning leads us to expect something at least a little new and interesting. Some guy is hanging out in a diner on a dark and stormy night, when Ben Kingsley shows up and gets all in his face. Moody and slightly crazy camera angles pop up all over the place as the man attempts to escape the glare from Kingsley’s bald head… err, I mean the crazy guy. It’s an interesting intro but unfortunately it’s all downhill from there.
Next we meet Thomas Mackelway, a standard issue Fallen FBI Agent With An Obsession, played by Aaron Eckhart, and his former-lover/new-partner Fran Kulok, played by Carrie-Anne Moss. As mentioned, they were former lovers, and they’re pretty pissed off at each other early on, but then for no apparent reason they start to get along quite swimmingly after they proceed with their investigations at a crime scene or two. Sadly, these two hero characters are remarkably dull, and I swear Mackelway shows the most emotion when confronted with a Frito Pie. Together, the two are stymied by such, um… (what’s the opposite of fascinating?) problems as the Perpetually Dirty Civilians Who Don’t Trust Authority, the Grumpy FBI Boss, the Mysterious Headaches of Doom, and the Elaborate Web of Deception.
As for the plot, it’s this completely insane jumble of mysterious faxes, psychic powers, and a giant semi truck. There’s some standard issue twists and turns and stuff, and I’m relatively certain that I have it all figured out, but even if I don’t, I can honestly say I don’t really care. Moodiness, fancy camera tricks, and creepy Kingsley aside, this movie was just plain bland. Rumor has it the original script was completely different, and it went through four rewrites after being put on track to production. Four rewrites… that’s not always a good sign, y’know. Ugh – I have this terrible feeling like the script was simply picked over to remove anything that might be interesting and thought provoking. Seems like there was some attempts at stylish metaphor and deep insights and whatnot, but nothing was really developed much. Well, if you’re desperate for a serial killer flick, or something with a touch of the psychic, you may want to check it out. Who knows? Maybe you’ll enjoy it. I personally thought that the whole thing was pulled off in a much too uninteresting way to make up for the standard plot.
Commentary by Director E. Elias Merhige
4-part featurette: What We See When We Close Our Eyes
Remote viewing demonstration
Alternate ending with optional directory commentary
ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1 CC
FRENCH: Dolby Digital 5.1
Widescreen 1.85:1 Color (Anamorphic)
Favorite Scenes: The remote viewing documentary
Running Time: 99 minutes