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Karen is a normal woman living a normal upper class life with her husband and her two daughters until one day she calls home on her cell phone, and Julie (her 17 year old daughter) answers. Julie is preparing for her sister Megan's 6th birthday at the time of the call, and Karen is still talking to her when someone suddenly breaks into the house and attacks Julie. Trying to get another cell phone in order to call the police for help, Karen rushes home as fast as she can, and is devastated by what has happened. Julie was raped and murdered. After Julie's killer, Robert Doob,a supermarket deliveryman is unfairly released. Karen takes on a somewhat different perspective on life. She devotes her life to hunt down the man who killed her daughter and in order to find him, Karen has to descend into a world she never knew existed. EYE FOR AN EYE is a very dark film about obsession and revenge and the price everybody involved has to pay. It's not the kind of film that tries to deliver a vision of hope, but rather a sinister world of cynicism. The only escape for Karen (and everybody else) seems to be the kind of love Karen shows for her daughter Megan, her husband and her friends.
Karen is a mother who has just lost her daughter to a brutal rape by a
man, Robert Doob. When the court lacks of evidence that he did it, he
goes free. But Karen isn't done with him yet; she will do whatever she
can in her power 'til there is justice for her daughter and another
victim of his.
I loved "Eye for an Eye", it's a terrific movie that is very well acted. I know it kind of looks like a movie for Lifetime or U.S.A., but nevertheless it's a great movie that should really be given a chance. I cried during this movie, during the scene where Karen is on the phone with her daughter, Julie while she is being raped by Robert. All she can hear is her daughter's screams, cries for help, and her last scream. Nobody on the street will help this poor woman who is screaming for the police to get to her house. I just can't imagine that ever happening, when I saw this movie with my mom, she held me close and started crying as well. Nobody wants that feeling and Sally did a great job on showing the fear in her eyes and the total feeling of no hope or being helpless.
Yes, it's a little over done and dramatic, but it's very real and I felt that it captured what every person has felt they wanted: justice for victims. How do you live when a person you loved so much is murdered and the person that did it got off because they had bad parents? Or they had a bad incident or just feels insane for a few minutes? How crazy is it? I think that's what got me close to the film, though I have not had a close family member murdered, I think we can understand the pain and confusion these people go through in the movie. I loved Karen's line to Mack "Do you believe in the death penalty?", he says "For that guy, I do" referring to Robert and Karen looks at him and asks "Why? Because it's just or you want revenge?". Despite it being a trick question without a satisfying answer, I think we have all felt that way.
Keifer Sutherland, man! I love this guy, he is one my favorite actors, because he is a methodist and is not afraid of taking chances. He as Robert Doob, I didn't want to believe it was him because he is so brutally convincing as this vicious and evil character that will brutally rape women and young girls. That scene where he is with Karen's little daughter, Megan, in the playhouse, was so incredibly suspenseful and I couldn't breath. Keifer did do great, just too great that scarred me. Ed Harris did great as well as Mack, Karen's husband. He tries so hard to put the family back together after the shattering aftermath of Julie's death and wishes Karen would come back to herself with Megan.
"Eye for an Eye" is a great movie that should be given a chance. The rape scenes are very disturbing, I warn you. You might need a strong stomach, especially for the scene I described with Karen on the phone with her daughter. The ending is a little short and felt rushed, but I would always recommend this for a watch.
This movie has been reviewed into overkill by many others on this board, so I will spare you another home-viewer's two thumbs down. However I would like to state that I am EXTREMELY surprised that no one has commented about the actual rape scene itself. I can remember watching this as a kid on Lifetime, and years later still remembering that scene to a chilling degree. In most cases for rape scenes, (at least the ones aired on television) they only get from the waist up in the shot. In this particular scene, the camera is aimed straight ahead at the rapist in a sitting position on the floor with the young girl laying out in front of him. Although there is no nudity involved, the scene is VERY graphic in nature. I don't know how in the world they got that girl to play out the scene so well, but I could actually feel her pain, as depicted in her face and screaming from being ripped apart. It was enough make me sick my stomach then as a child, and now as an adult.
...seems to have enraged some viewers of this film. The bad guy is really bad. Guess what, they're like that in the real world too. There are plenty of bad guys out there who have no redeeming qualities and do laugh at the system, assuming it will never be able to really punish them. I found this movie very believable and thought the acting was terrific and the climax very satisfying. It was nice to see something come out of Hollywood that wasn't skewed in perspective by the left coast that produced it. Anybody who thinks Robert Doob as a character is too one-dimensional to be believable has never met a violent criminal in the flesh.
Before the hit television show "24," Keifer Sutherland played mostly
despicable, evil characters. That's what he does in this film, as
"Robert Doob," a low-life who rapes and kills Sally Field's daughter
and then is unfairly released by the courts. Sally, playing "Karen
McCann," goes after justice.
Almost everyone loves a revenge story and that, of course, is what this movie is, pure and simple: kind of a female "Death Wish."
As for the characters, Sutherland is "over the top" with his guy - way, way past despicable, so ridiculously bad and evil you might even laugh.
For those who picture Sally Field as "The Flying Nun," this movie will be a shock. She is anything but the sweet, wholesome-looking girl she appeared to be in so many of her films when she was younger.....or even the new TV commercials of today. Even though she has shown she can be very foul- mouthed ('m talking 'real life'), somehow seeing her portrayed here as a vigilante, doesn't ring up. Charles Bronson, yes; Sally Field, uh.....no.
Be warned: this is a tough movie in spots, especially in the beginning. It is very similar to the opening in "Death Wish," and is not for the squeamish.
This isn't a bad movie. It is extremely manipulative and has a bunch of plot holes, but if you love revenge films and don't care about particularly intelligent scripts (although the mad-as-hell mom isn't stupid in here), you can just add this one to your library. It serves its purpose of entertaining.
Karen (Sally Field) and Mack McCann (Ed Harris) are happily married
with two daughters. While on a phone call with her daughter Julie,
Karen hears Julie being raped and murdered. Det. Sgt. Denillo (Joe
Mantegna) investigates. Karen and Mack go to a support group. Robert
Doob (Kiefer Sutherland) is arrested but the supposed dead bang case is
dismissed because of a promise from the previous prosecutor to provide
a sample of the DNA evidence. Karen starts following delivery boy
Doobs. He pays a visit to her younger daughter Megan. She finds a group
of vigilantes from the support group. However one of the support group
member turns out to be an FBI agent investigating vigilante killings.
Everything in this movie is heightened to get on the audience's nerves. It jumps quickly into the rape and murder. It's a very effective scene especially with Sally Field acting for all her worth. However every scene is pushed hard by director John Schlesinger. Kiefer is all greased up. This is not a subtle movie but it could do with some. It's unnerving but in a bad way. It takes itself very seriously which makes all the manipulations all the much harder to take.
Karen McCann (Sally Field) is preparing the birthday party of her
younger daughter Megan (Alexandra Kyle). Her older daughter Julie
(Olivia Burnette) goes home earlier in the afternoon to help in the
preparation and talks by phone with her mother that is in a traffic
jam. Out of the blue, a man breaks in the house and rapes and kills
Julie. Det. Sgt. Denillo (Joe Mantegna) is in charge of the
investigation and captures the killer Robert Doob (Kiefer Sutherland)
with strong evidences against him. However his lawyer uses a technical
detail to dismiss the evidence and Robert is released. Karen and her
husband Mack (Ed Harris) are advised to go to a support group and she
discovers that there are vigilantes entwined in the group. Meanwhile
Karen follows Robert that works delivering groceries and she finds that
he intends to attack a Latin woman. She tries to warn the police and
the probable victim, but she is driven away by them. When Robert finds
that Karen is following him, he threatens her telling that he would
visit Megan. Karen decides to have self-defense and shooting classes
and the vigilante Sidney Hughes (Philip Baker Hall) gives a revolver to
her. When the woman she tried to warn is murdered by Robert, Karen
plots a scheme to get rid of the killer.
"Eye for an Eye" is a dramatic thriller with a great story of justice and revenge. It is a shame that lawyers use breaches in the laws to defend scums like the character Robert Doob, but that is the sad reality. The praiseworthy attitude of Karen McCann is an exception but perfectly understood in the situation. The acting is excellent and the plot is timeless. My vote is seven.
Title (Brazil): "Olho por Olho" ("Eye for an Eye")
If you like Sally Field, you'll love this movie because she does what Sally does best . . . intense drama! I think she should have won an Academy Award for her portrayal of Karen, the horrified, devastated, angry, Mom/wife whose beautiful teen-age daughter was brutally raped & murdered by a wacko delivering groceries! She was every bit as good as she was in "Norma Rae" and "Places in the Heart"! Some say the movie was not realistic . . obviously you've never been poor or lived in bad neighborhoods, because this kind of stuff happens everyday! The way the justice system works was very realistic also. Gee, let me throw out the name O.J. Simpson! . . I rest my case! Granted the movie was very graphic but so is violent crime in real life! It was very realistic! I cried and grieved (having lost a loved one to violent crime myself) and was angry and revengeful right along with her. I wanted to reach thru the screen and strangle Robert Doob (Kiefer Sutherland, who should of won a best supporting actor award) the cocky, cold, malicious killer, who had no respect for human life and thought he was above the law! I hated him! And I would have done exactly what Sally Fields did if that was my only recourse get justice done! He was clever but she outsmarted him at his own game and did it within the law! This movie was so moving, I was an emotional wreck at the end just like Sally was! I thought the whole cast did a very good job and that the movie was underrated because of it's content. Not everyone wants to watch something so intense. After a hard day at work, I prefer to sit down to something lighthearted like comedy but this one was just to good to pass up!
Sally Fields does a good job with this movie as a revenge seeking
mother of a teenage daughter who's been raped and murdered. I suppose
to make this worth watching, she has to do a good job with this. The
story itself has been done over and over: seeking revenge after a
violent crime because the justice system has failed. That's a pretty
cliché type of situation and story, so there's not really a great deal
to recommend this as far as originality is concerned. But Fields is
good, and Kiefer Sutherland is appropriately creepy and threatening as
the rapist/murderer. The portrayal of the rape of Karen's daughter was
terrifying, but (thankfully) not especially graphic.) The same could be
said for the later rape committed by Sutherland's Doob. The movie, in
my opinion, also makes a fair point about the justice system leaning
too far on the side of defending the rights of obviously guilty
criminals at the expense of actually dispensing justice for their
victims. I understand the need to protect the rights of the accused,
but there does have to be a balance, and that balance is sometimes lost
in the system that we have.
I was kind of put off by the "group" the McCann's attended for people who had lost loved ones to violence. To each his or her own, I suppose, but I can't imagine that sitting around night after night talking about the same thing over and over and over again is really going to help anyone move on, and I wasn't convinced by the "vigilante organization" aspect of this.
I have to say, though, that I did like the ending. What I was finding distasteful up to this point was that Karen was going to turn vigilante, and by so doing she'd be be risking losing her other daughter as well by ending up in prison, which might have satisfied her own desire for revenge but would have been very selfish toward the younger daughter. So, the way she played things, she made sure that (a) she'd get her revenge, but (b) that she wouldn't lose anything more by doing it. So, the ending worked for me. Overall, I found this a pretty good watch. (7/10)
The thing that spoiled the story for me and just made the whole thing
implausible was ed harris and ed harris alone........i cannot imagine a
father whose daughter is violently raped and murdered acting in such a
blaze' or indifferent and completely detached manner.........he was
absolutely blank about it and acted pretty much as if nothing unusual
happened in his life.........as opposed, say, to sean penn in mystic
river reacting to the same situation (outstanding believability) i have
never thought much of harris' quirky and bizarre acting style until i
realized he is just a terrible actor, that there is no real style to
think about and this is a good example of that blankness and absence of
emotion..........they would have gotten a better performance out of
someone who just happened by the set.
Harris' performance here, as in many of his performances was without substance.
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