Point of Origin (2002)

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Point of Origin, produced by HBO, marks the feature directorial debut of accomplished cinematographer Newton Thomas Sigel (Three Kings, X-Men). The film is based on an actual serial arson investigation that took place in Glendale, CA, in the late '80s and early '90s. Ray Liotta stars in the film as John Orr, a skilled arson investigator with a sixth sense for finding the "point of origin," the place where a fire was started. Orr also has a knack for locating the devices used to start the fires. Keith Lang (John Leguizamo), his ambitious young protégé, calls Orr "Professor." Orr is stumped by a series of big fires, some fatal, which seem to have been set by the same arsonist. A commission is appointed to investigate the case, headed up by ATF agent Mike Matasso (Colm Feore) and fireman Mike Camello (Cliff Curtis). Orr uses his influence to get Lang appointed to the panel. But Matasso and Orr are immediately at odds with each other, as the ATF man seems to resent Orr's efforts to maintain control of the investigation. Orr is also dealing with his troubled marriage to Wanda (Bai Ling) and is having an affair with the volatile Kate (Illeana Douglas). As he gets deeper into the case, trying to get inside the head of the criminal, Orr begins to worry that the arsonist has some kind of personal involvement with him. Then the commission uncovers a link to an earlier string of fires, and uncovers evidence that the arsonist may actually be a fireman. The actual investigators, Matasso and Camello, have cameos in the film, and Camello also served as one of the film's technical advisors. These events were also the basis for Joseph Wambaugh's book Fire Lover: A True Story.
Rating:
R (adult situations/language)
Genre:
Drama , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:
HBO Video

Cast

Ray Liotta
as John Orr
John Leguizamo
as Keith Lang
Colm Feore
as Mike Matassa
Cliff Curtis
as Mike Camello
Ling Bai
as Wanda Orr
Ingrid Rogers
as Ambria
Sophia Bush
as Carrie Orr
Ronny Cox
as Chief Gray
Trent Gill
as Marty
Mike Camello
as Glen Lucero
Sandy Gimpel
as Stella Cove
Maree Cheatham
as Gabby Finn
Graham Beckel
as Clarence Hyde
Ashly Holloway
as Lori Orr
Shashawnee Hall
as Lt. Tom Hines
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