The Factory Reviews
Great Film! The plot is basically a variation on Kiss the Girls with a touch of 8mm at the end. These are two excellent movies to plagiarize. The twist, ridiculous as it is, is good and i didn't see it coming. The film is a taut, edge-of-your-seat thriller in the best tradition of these films. I can't remember when John Cusack has been better, and both Jennifer Carpenter and Dallas Roberts are revelations. A truly great film and that plot twist just made the movie so much more enjoyable. Go see it!
Detective Mike Fletcher, a rugged and obsessive police officer, and his partner Kelsey Walker, are on the trail of a serial killer who prowls the streets targeting young streetwalkers. When his teenage daughter disappears, Fletcher discovers that the killer has kidnapped her after mistaking her for a prostitute. Fletcher's obsession goes into overdrive when he drops all professional restraint to get the killer and save his daughter.
All of that goes out the window as the film progresses, particularly in its third act. The action becomes less grounded and tense, and more ridiculous and forced. The dialogue becomes borderline comical, the film seems to lose everything it had going for it. The final twist ending is what really kills the film, being absurdly asinine, poorly executed, shamelessly setting up a sequel.
Mike and Kelsey have been on the case of a serial killer for quite some time, but the department is shutting their efforts down for lack of progress. It's Thanksgiving, and Mike asks Kelsey to stop by to say hello to his wife Shelley, and daughter Abby.
There is tension between Shelly and Abby, and between Shelley and Mike. Mike and Kelsey revive the case somewhat over a murder of a transsexual. Abby gets more discouraged with Shelley, and takes off. She breaks up with her boyfriend, and the serial killer kidnaps her. Shelley finally notices Abbey is gone. She alerts Mike, and the police engage more strongly.
Mike and Kelsey get a lead on the accomplice of the killer. Mike goes off on him, and physically assaults him. After trying to follow the accomplice, they give up after a while. The accomplice was on a long shift and stayed in the hospital where he worked to avoid being followed. Mike loses his composure at home.
Abbey, meanwhile, has a wretched time in captivity with other young women who have been kidnapped. Mike starts looking at his daughter's life as he would if he were not his father; then the clues start coming.
Will Abbey get rescued? Will Mike still have a career?
Cinematography: 8/10 Better than VHS quality, but not by much.
Sound: 4/10 Sound levels were absurdly out of control.
Acting: 6/10 Cusack and Carpenter were fine. Dallas Roberts, whose role was pivotal, was unconvincing, beginning to end. Mae Whitman was rather good, but Sonya Walger not so much.
Screenplay: 6/10 The story was clever and engaging, but the poor choices in casting nullified much of that. I enjoyed the onscreen time of Cusack and Carpenter, but when Roberts was onscreen, the urge to leave to get a cup of coffee was enormous. The ending was tough to stomach, but it certainly explained the difficulties in the investigation.