Donna Yaklich meets Dennis the policeman and thinks she might have found a good relationship. But Dennis is obsessed with weight-lifting and uses steroids, which make him aggressive and ... See full summary »
Behind the facade of a perfect suburban life lies a secret and insufferable nightmare: a woman and her children are subjected to their father's unpredictable temper and violent outbursts. ... See full summary »
LaTanya Richardson Jackson
On her wedding night, twenty-year-old Darcy Palmer empties her fiancé's bank account and flees to New York City. Along the way, she tries robbing Brianne Dwyer, who's heading to a New ... See full summary »
Claude is a university statistics professor with a dark side. Kim is the young woman he kidnaps to satisfy his dysfunctional needs. In this psychological thriller, tenderness develops ... See full summary »
The original Broadway production of "Pack of Lies" opened at the Royale Theater in New York on February 11, 1985 and ran for 120 performances. Rosemary Harris was nominated for the 1983 Tony Award for Actress in a Drama for "A Pack of Lies." Hugh Whitemore wrote the stage play and the teleplay for the filmed production. See more »
The story of this movie is classical Hitchcock stuff. It tells about fear, suspicion, innocence, betrayed trust and delivers a considerable amount of suspense. It is based on real events and is basically a movie about the invasion of privacy and its devastating effects thanks to the excellent performances of all the actors a rewarding experience, but one that left me feeling sad and uncomfortable.
The question of loyalty looms large over the whole situation. So, your neighbors who happen to be your best friends, are suspected of being spies. But those who want you to believe that are very secretive about it, giving away only shreds of information, leaving you more or less in the dark. Is the neighbors' friendship a total fake, merely a tactical gimmick? Are they ignorant about all that is going on and maybe just victims? You can't talk about it with your friends - which basically is what friends are for - you must lie to them, faking the "usual ignorance". No wonder that the concerned family get to the brink of insanity, especially because - as if this were not enough - they have to deal with permanent house-guests who more or less take over the dwelling, spying on the neighborhood for some not really clear reason creating an all around surreal situation. Remains the question: Whom can you trust? You have to trust somebody.
It does this movie great credit that it distributes the pack of lies evenly, not demonizing anybody. There is nothing bad" about the neighbors who are revealed in the end as hardboiled spies and did what they did because of their political convictions. They are perfectly civil and likable, up to their arrest which comes through as a general defeat for everybody concerned in the immediate surroundings. The effects on the family are truly devastating, and that is hard to take even if in all probability there wouldn't have been more sensible ways to deal with the situation successfully. So probably they belong to the anonymous victims of the Cold War to whom, as far as I know, nobody ever erected a monument.
The only thing I regret about Pack of Lies is the stylistic approach, which is flat and undramatic and makes it almost a documentary in appearance. In my opinion, the surrealistic elements of the story and the moral turmoils the family has to go through would have justified a slightly more "cinematic" approach to the issue. After all, the whole situation is really far from normal. Or so I hope.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?