Identity - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Identity Reviews

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½ February 1, 2018
Good atmosphere, the ten little Indians part is ok, the rest is really kind of a mess.
January 28, 2018
A disappointing exercise in trying to outwit the audience that starts off strong but ultimately begins to unravel in the second act and completely derails by the climax of the film.

Identity has a fairly strong opening. Its a setup that we've seen time and time again even long before the film's original release in 2003 but the film takes its time to show the different perspectives of how everybody came together. The film starts off with a strong structure that allows you to understand everything occuring with ease. The film takes its time planting loose threads and possible motives all over the first act, most of which were done quite well for the time being. Where many films of this variety stumble right out of the gate Identity begins on a great footing. That, unfortunately, just makes it all the more disappointing that the film begins to trip over its own feet afterwards.

Starting from the second act onward the film's problems begin to crop up. Artificial conflict between some characters begin without any setup at all while points that should create conflict between other characters simply don't. Characters that mostly behave logically have complete lapses in basic judgement when there's a known serial killer on the loose when they're all crowded in a perfectly safe, secure room with two armed police officers. There is a fine line between irrational paranoia and blatant foolishness and characters frequenty trudge into the latter realm. The film mostly stops using its cuts into chronology like it did earlier in the film and settles into a more traditional method of storytelling, something which does nothing to distract from the logical issues with the script.

Identity is very genre conscious, with characters at one point even saying that the situation that they're in is like in movies that they've seen before. The film tries to be very clever in itsreptition of undermining audience expectations, or at least trying to do so. You may think "oh, they're going with this tired cliche" when they subvert it and then introduce another that they, again, subvert. Its an interesting idea for a script but most of the subversion fails. If you have a keen eye you'll notice what are supposed ominous hints that ultimately are techical failures that don't hold up to scrutiny. Some characters outright state things that are factual in its world and the the real world that directly contradict the direction that the story is headed . Some absolutely essential details are omitted and then the film frames it as a shocking twist when there was no reason to leave the audience in the dark about it to begin with. In a sense, the film "cheats" in other ways that I couldn't describe without getting deep into story spoilers. Identity's worst sin is that at the end of every one of these subversions is just one of the cliches that was on your shortlist of possible cliches to begin with, usually the one most worth an eyeroll and exasperated sigh. That isn't subversion, its tedious process of elimination. Identity's genre consciousness is an ambitious idea that ultimately disappoints over and over. With each revelation a larger failure than the previous one, the final act is filled with disappointing ends to every thread and every opportunity to put itself back on track by revealing a shocking twist ends up just derailing the film even further as you immediately reject the twist without even having to wait for a pause in the action to think it over.

Identity starts off with strong writing, acting, and directing. but as the film proceeds each of those categories begin to suffer. Its final act in particular is a trainwreck of comic proportions, so misaligned with the beginning of the film that you suspect that it was written by somebody else entirely. Identity clearly had the potential to rewrite the genre by being aware of it and trying to subvert genre tropes and cliches but ultimately it ends up emulating of the worst of the genre, leaving you to roll your eyes so frequently that you'll need to schedule an appointment with an optometrist shortly after viewing.
January 19, 2018
A very cool take on the Agatha Christie play And then there were none. While it is dated a little bit and the ending twist is predictable, it's a very solid thriller. A great cast and a great premise. The 1st act has some great writing about how they all end up in the hotel. I wouldn't call it scary. The deaths are more funny than horrifying. It's unique and worth checking out.
January 14, 2018
Awesome murder mystery with plenty of twists and thought provoking moments.
½ January 10, 2018
Very good plot and also scary. It's captivating from beginning to end. Great acting.
½ December 19, 2017
Actually, the main attraction for this film that saved it with a boost in entertainment value isn't the mystery game but the plot twist that led into another after couple of twists and turns, whether you heard of it vaguely or not, it'll still shock you and make the viewing worthwhile. (B)

(Full review TBD)
October 14, 2017
It was original I'll give it that much. Identity is a film that is worth seeing once due to its impressive cast and unique premise, but save it for a rainy day (which is exactly what I did)
August 14, 2017
Great movie keeps you guessing till the end. One of the best psychological thrillers I have ever seen!
August 11, 2017
Talking about Identity without giving spoilers is like trying to walk safely through a minefield, but I'll do my best. There are boatloads of twists and turns in the plot. Many of them I guessed before they were revealed, but I was never sure until they gave it away. It's a well-constructed narrative that puzzles you and yet makes some sense when you know everything. There are parts that aren't even told in a linear fashion which adds to the intrigue. It's definitely the kind of thriller that I enjoy a lot.

John Cusack is always one of my favorite actors as the every-man and audience surrogate. I loved what he did in Identity. Ray Liotta brings his perfect brand of tough guy attitude and that adds a lot to the film as well. The other standout for me was John Hawkes whose face I recognize but I don't know if I've ever seen him do this much to develop a role. Amanda Peet has never been one of my favorite actresses. I simply don't buy her in the role and she needed to be a stronger presence in the film.

I think there is some stretching of reality for this film. I mean there was simply an element that won't hold up if you put too much thought into it. I went with it all, and just accepted it as movie logic. Also of note in Identity is the score. I'm not typically someone who notices the score all that much, but for some reason Alan Silvestri's work made an impression here. It did a great job of setting tone. This is an excellent mystery thriller with a well-crafted script and a solid cast, so I'd definitely recommend it to others.
½ May 18, 2017
It was really mysterious from the beginning but after the plot twist, find that it was no longer interesting unfortunately.
May 7, 2017
Dallas and Jay said so.
½ April 25, 2017
Identity is such a rarity film that will divide audiences regarding of its plot twists. Some might be impressed and others might be confused and irritated. However, John Cusack gives a very good and convincing performance and being the protagonist of the many identities that coexist in a person's body. It is refreshing in a way that it tells a short tale in thriller form of a rare psychological disease, Dissociative Identity Disorder. The film is a constant exemplary thriller that keeps tension in an isolated environment. But, as the last final act kicks in, it changes revealing the twists to what a psychological thriller might be a correct term to use. Regardless of these plot twists, it does make some aspects of the film, or the events happened previously uneven or questionable as some parts do not make sense. It does have some lack of acting except for the main character. As an R-rated horror/thriller film, the props and visuals are what expected, some violent imagery. Aside from the major problems, it is a very well done thriller
April 23, 2017
loved it. can't believe i haven't seen it before now.
½ April 15, 2017
Review (1~5)

#Content: Script 4 | Acting 4 | Cinematography 4 | Film Editing 4

#Visual: Costume Design 3 | Makeup & Hairstyling 3 | Scenic Design 3 | Lighting 3 | Visual Effects 3

#Sound: Score & Soundtracks 3 | Sound Editing & Mixing 3

#Overall (1~10): 7
March 20, 2017
Decent enough mystery film, but becomes all too predictable, & doesn't seem to know what to do with itself.
March 5, 2017
Great movie, kinda intense... cast is great...premise is original.... alfred hitchcock type story...with a hint of the twighlight zone thrown in for good measure
February 8, 2017
Love the idea of the film. Not really horror just Mor mystery. Though flawed very interesting take on multiple personality disorder. Ending was great, over all cool conceptually like psycho meets Halloween.
January 28, 2017
Classic Thriller!!! Had me Hook for the Whole ride.
January 27, 2017
Mind fuck of a movie
December 11, 2016
Based on the Agatha Christie novel "And Then There Were Now", Identity is a solid, well acted, well developed and especially disturbing movie, with a big twist near the end that I really wasn't expecting. It's a suspenseful, very atmospheric and mysterious movie, you may predict some of the stuff or not, but still, in general, it's a good psychological thriller. Recommended !!
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