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When a cop loses his memory while in the middle of a murder investigation he must turn to a lady psychologist for help. As his memory returns he begins to piece the parts of the crime together, zeroing in on the killer whom he believes is a member of the police force. The life of the psychologist is endangered after the murderer is thought to have been killed by the police. Good drama with a surprise at the end.
Treat Williams plays a police officer who has lost part of his memory, yet
keeps having flashbacks about a serial killer who binds and rapes his
victims. Why does he do that , you ask? Ask one of his fellow police
played by Tim Busfield who swears Williams knows more about the murders
he lets on. Any how, he enlists the aid of the good doctor(margaret Colin)
to help him figure out why he has these flashbacks and how to stop the
killer. Of course, they become romantically linked, and that puts her in
danger, which he rescues her from, so why is there still time left in the
Good performances all around, especially by Williams who keeps you guessing who the killer is with his charm and a heated performance by Busfield who would have criminals dragged into the streets and shot. Colin plays the part of concerned doctor, potential victim and caring lover all the while ignoring strange inconsistencies in facts.
If you get the chance, watch the movie, and tell me who the killer is, my d**ned VCR cut off before the show was over. I think I know, but I must be sure, was it really that obvious? I need closure!!!! 7 out of 10
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
(There are Spoilers) Better then expected made for TV movie about a
serial killer on the loose who's being tracked by a cop who's trying to
regain his memory that, among things, has the identity of just who the
killer is. The movie "Shadow of Evil" is shot in an eerie green tint
that makes it more creepy that it already is. The fact that the person
in charge of the murder investigation Det. Jack Brenner, Treat
Williams,is working with half his brain blacked out, due to amnesia,
gives the unseen killer the edge that he needs to continue his murder
After hitting his head on a rail chasing a suspect Brenner wakes up with his memory for the last six months wiped away. It's in those six months that Brenner identified who the serial killer, who's case he was in charge of, is. Not taking any notes because Brenner felt that the killer is a cop who he works with, and could get his hands on them at the police station, all the vital information to the killer's identity was lost together with Brenner's memory.
The police department gets neurologist Doctor Molly Nostrand, Margaret Coiln, to treat Brenner and get him to regain his lost memory. When it slowly starts to come back Brenner slowly starts to get paranoid with what he finds out about the killer.
Like a Three Card Monte game the movie keeps shifting the suspect, or actual killer, around with evidence that implicates almost everyone involved in the case including Det Brenner himself. There's the police pathologist Dr. Frank Teague, William H. Macy, who seems to always be away from his job or home when the serial murders are committed. Teague is also morbidly fascinated with the dead bodies that he operates on at the local morgue. There's also Brenners fellow cop Det. Keller, Timothy Busfield, who's dislike and attitude towards Brenner seem a bit more then jealousy. Is Keller afraid of what Brenner is about to find out to who the killer is? There's also Brenner's boss Let. Royce, Joe Morton, who's a bit too eager to get him off the case and looks for every excuse to do so. with Det. Keller doing everything possible to make it happen, is Royce hiding something?
There was an incident that involved a homeless man Noel Briggs, Tom Proctor,at the very start of the movie that was quickly forgotten that's the key to who the serial killer really is. It's not until much later that the person, Briggs, who Brenner chased on the railroad tracks reveals what he knows about the killings and that breaks the case, and Brenner's memory, wide open! But not the way you, and everyone in the cast including the killer himself, would have expected.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Spoiler alert. I agree with other comments that the killer's identity
was all too obvious. Two hours of my life wasted just to see if a plot
could be that obvious. I guess it must have looked better on paper. Oh
well, I couldn't sleep anyway.
There were just too many hints that gave the plot away, and I hate to think that anyone, much less a psychologist, would be so stupid, as this female character was, to not have at least some doubts in the actions of the person they are involved with. I kept waiting for a scene where the chimp would tell the psychologist through sign language..."Wake up stupid, you're sleeping with the killer!"
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Another serial killer, called The Roper, is hard at work. Hot-shot
detective Treat Williams is hard on his trail. The killer seems to know
a bit about police procedure and Williams suspects the pathologist,
William Macy. But in pursuit of a suspect Williams bonks his head and
loses his memory. There are the usual intermittent black-and-white
flashbacks lasting a second or two, but otherwise Williams' memory of
the case is ablated. He tries to put it all back together again with
the help of the sympathetic doctor, Margaret Colin.
The film is not an unabashed failure. It's not an insult to the intelligence. The performances are at least up to expected professional levels and the direction is competent. The story itself is interesting, in the way that all serial-killer movies are interesting. We can understand murdering someone you love. That person is someone who's opinion we care about, who's in a position to hurt us. But the deliberate murder of complete strangers has a preposterous quality. We can't get inside the murderer's head.
But serial-killer movies are a genre unto themselves. There are now more movies about serial killers than there are serial killers. If there were as many of them running about as the movies would have us believe, they'd be organized and they'd have annual conventions in places like Palm Beach and Aspen.
And this is no more than a routine example of the genre. There's not an original note in it. You'll figure out who the killer is long before the Big Reveal.
The photography is too dark. I blame "The X Files" for that. This movie was released in 1995 and "The X Files" first aired two years earlier. It was a huge commercial success. For a period of about ten years, every crime story ever filmed imitated its visual style, which was characterized by lots of darkness punctuated by a couple of roving flashlight beams. In this movie, the PATHOLOGIST'S ROOM is dark! All style and little substance or, to put it another way, plenty of heat but no light. Pfui.
Treat Williams isn't a bad actor but his performances seem to be knee-capped by a high, weak voice. It suits him for secondary roles or for leads that are filled with uncertainty and self doubt. He was fine as the tormented squealer in "Prince of the City," but lacks something as an obsessed detective.
Margaret Colin is splendid as the doc who finally yields to her patient's charm. She resembles Elizabeth Perkins but is more earthy in looks and demeanor. She's slow and deliberate in everything she does and says, and she combines strength with sex appeal.
It's too bad she never found her niche. It's certainly not in this formulaic movie. Even the title, "In The Shadow of Evil," is routine. It belongs on the list of generic titles along with "Guns of Darkness," "Another Dawn," "On The Edge," "No Way Out," "The Big Mistake," "In The Middle", and "Kiss My Beluga." There is a scene in which Williams' detective pushes too much on the case and is made to hand over his badge and gun to his boss. Ho hum.
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