Fade to Black (2006)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

A screen legend is drawn into a murder mystery that reaches to the highest ranks of the entertainment industry in director Oliver Parker's 1940s-era thriller featuring a sleuthing Orson Welles (played by Danny Huston). The year is 1948 and, having just suffered a breakup with Rita Hayworth and a falling-out with Hollywood, Welles arrives in Rome to appear before the cameras in Black Magic. Though Welles' primary concerns on the set of his latest film are to forget his troubles back home and secure financing for his next directorial effort, the on-set murder of a supporting player proves but the opening act of a much larger mystery. Subsequently enlisting the aid of his faithful driver, an ex-policeman named Tommaso (Diego Luna), Welles discovers a hit list that includes his name and points to a deadly and far-reaching conspiracy. As the first democratic elections draw near and old vendettas slowly begin to surface, Welles and his sleuthing companion are about to come into the company of some very dangerous people.
Mystery & Suspense
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Danny Huston
as Orson Welles
Diego Luna
as Tommaso
Paz Vega
as Lea Padovani
Anna Galiena
as Aida Padovani
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Critic Reviews for Fade to Black

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (1)

For all its flaws, it's a movie-lover's movie, and clear evidence that Parker should push himself a bit more often.

Full Review… | March 7, 2008
Time Out
Top Critic

All credit to writer-director Oliver Parker for trying to broaden his CV, but Danny Huston is a terrible bore as Welles, Paz Vega continues to be incomprehensible in English, and the murky mystery plot limps along unrewardingly.

Full Review… | March 7, 2008
Daily Telegraph (UK)

On paper this must have looked a neat idea: a wildly fictionalised account of a skid-row Orson Welles, up to his neck in political skulduggery while shooting a third-rate picture in post-war Italy.

Full Review… | March 7, 2008

A retro pastiche that, like The Good German before it, will be of limited interest to all but the most ardent film buff.

Full Review… | March 7, 2008

Like Black Magic itself, alas, this is destined to be a forgotten curio of limited appeal.

Full Review… | March 7, 2008

Fade to Black is as sleek and attractive as the chrome polished vintage cars Huston travels in, but never truly gets in gear.

Full Review… | March 7, 2008
Sky Movies

Audience Reviews for Fade to Black


I appreciated the dark humor in this noir thriller, but the story seemed somewhat convoluted. I have no idea why Spanish actors were cast to play Italians.

Gabriel Knight
Gabriel Knight

I got confused with this one. Is this really a thriller/suspense, or it is just another mafia movie with Cristopher Walken? Hmm...well...if this was a thriller/suspense, it was really slow-paced and quickly lost my attention.

Jacob Palacio
Jacob Palacio

Super Reviewer

Another Orson Welles movie, this one involving a murder mystery. While its beautifully shot, and very creative in its scene development, its extremely boring, and almost unbearably so. Huston, though charming, never seems to capture the role in the way you wish him to, and its almost as if you have to hear him say he's Orson Welles each time for you to believe it. Diego Luna and Paz Vega can't add the flavor this convoluted mystery needs to be saved, but the director certainly has a future with a better script and a peppier pace.

Aaron Schroeder
Aaron Schroeder

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