Patryk's Review of Primal Fear
At first sight, the story presented in Primal Fear looks strangely familiar: a troubled, socially awkward boy named Aaron (Edward Norton in a most audacious performance, and a screen debut) kills a seemingly innocent older man (in this film a priest) and is caught red-handed only moments later. A noted defense lawyer Martin Vail (played by Richard Gere), looking for new ways to boost his fame, decides to take the case and defend the murderer in court. However, it seems as though the truth is buried several layers deep, and the only way to discover the truth is to actually get to know the accused and his depraved mind. This is the moment for Edward Norton to shine. His wonderful performance (which earned him an Oscar nomination) makes Primal Fear an outstanding achievement in the court drama genre. With every new discovery the case becomes more and more confusing, and Martin starts to believe that the boy, diagnosed with multiple personality disorder, is innocent and the one, who's responsible for the brutal crime is Aaron's evil alter ego Roy.
It's a surprising and totally entertaining film, which doesn't fall into the trap of unnecessary cliches, and delivers one of the most disquieting endings in the history of the genre. Norton's career-making performance, combined with Gere's experience and bold attention to details as a lawyer, brings out all that's best and most twisted about the case presented in Primal Fear. Engaging, to say the least, plot leaves one dazzled and begging for more clues as the whole intrigue comes to a tremendous conclusion.