Cold Around the Heart (1997)
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David Caruso does his patented "I'm going to look you right in the eye and tell you exactly how things are" bit several times. Kelly Lynch does her patented "Don't I look hot in sunglasses?" bit several times. These were pluses for me, may be minuses for others.
Overall 6-7 out of 10.
As Ned is recovering from his wounds in the local hospital he gives the police the slip by barricading himself in his hospital room and then jumping out the back window. On the run and on foot Ned then buys himself-where did he get the money-a used car and picks up a teenage hitchhiker Bec Rosenberg, Stacey Dash, who for his good deed attempts to carjack him! Getting Bec, after disarming her, to see things his way Ned ends up at his hermits Uncle Mike's-John Spencer- place for the night.
Ned now determined to knock off his former partner and lover Jude for double-crossing him has no trouble whatsoever in finding her at all. All he does is call information and wallah he gets her phone number at the motel she's staying at! It seems that Unce Mike living alone in the desert for years is hungry for female companionship and as soon as Ned's back is turned makes a play for the pretty but not so innocent, in being raped by her drunken father, Bec. This has Ned come to Bec's rescue by blasting the very drunk and horny Uncle Mike away before he can do any damage. Meanwhile while all this is going on Jude becomes very friendly with this weirdo she meets at a local bar, whom she treats to a cheeseburger and fries, the former Milwaukee brewery worker Mr "T", Chris Noth, who's not the original Mr"T" but just a cheap imitation.
***SPOILER ALERT*** As Jude soon finds out Mr "T" isn't the brainless hick that she at first took him for. In fact Mr "T" isn't the very good and true blue friend that Ned, whom we find out that he's very tight with, thought he was either! Mr "T" turns out to be about the oddest odd-ball of the entire whacked out cast in the film!
We have both Ned & Jude constantly double-crossing each other to the point that we in the audience start to loose focus to just what the movie is really all about; The missing $250,000.00 in uncut diamonds stolen at the beginning of the film, in the jewelry robbery, that had since disappeared! Added to the mix is Johnny "Coke-bottles" Costello, Pruitt Taylor Vince, who was supposed to fence the diamond that he now claims that he never had in the first place!
In the end we have a number of deadly shootouts as well as miraculous resurrections together with an eye-popping almost nuclear-like explosion that just about wipes out, whatever still left of it, the films entire cast of charterers! It's who survives in all the carnage that's about the only surprise, and a non surprising one at that, that's still left in the movie!
Cliches abound, but in the context of the characters, perhaps understandable since they're easier to use than real communication. This movie is about virtue versus the "bad seed". Who is and who isn't. The low life quest where everyone is out for themselves continues throughout with twist after twist.
I found it a plus overall, even though some story transitions were puzzling if not far- fetched. I was entertained.
David Caruso and Kelly Lynch star as the 2 bandits who are on the lam following a jewelry heist, where Lynch used her gun to kill 3 people in the store. What follows is an absolute thriller with deception here as the name of the game.
Caruso meets on the way a young black teenager, who pulls a gun on him before breaking down and telling him her sad story.
On the other hand, Lynch fearing that Caruson will catch up and kill her for her betrayal, meets up with T, a very interesting character played by Chris Noth, in a totally change of persona for Mr. Noth.
T is not as innocent and naive as he is made out to be. In fact, he is a plant by the Caruso character.
The ending may be somewhat bizarre and violent, but remember the old Babylonian adage: An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth or simply, what goes around, comes around.
Our teenager represents that there is redemption and justification for a second chance.
The film opens with a betrayal after a messy robbery and it never gets to rise above that cliché. The story is very sedentary and never gets any tension or excitement. The story moves very slowly things happen but they are not surprising or interesting, leaving you cold, detached from the story. The script is full of cliché and pure laziness Tash's escape from custody is too easy and things like buying a car etc are just glossed over. Betray and double crosses are good things when done well here they fail to spark even slight interest.
The performances are poor considering the cast. I love Caruso he's made bad movie choices but he's still one of my favourite actors. Here he does his usual `cocked head, menacing tone but honest guy' act that he's done since it hit in NYPD Blue, but he doesn't bring any depth to Ned failing to show us when he can't shake Jude off. Being stuck with that stupid haircut probably didn't help. Likewise Lynch didn't seem up to the job of playing Jude and yes, someone did decide to call her Jude Law despite the famous namesake! Stacey Dash (Clueless) is very sexy but her dull narration at the start sets a poor tone, she does OK but again her character is a cardboard cut out. Cameos from the excellent John Spencer (West Wing) and the goofy Richard Kind (Spin City) help by being interesting but they aren't in it long enough to be save the film.
It's a shame because the cast deserved better. But the script is poor and cliched and the story is delivered as flat and lifelessly as it can be. A real disappointment that fails to grip.
Eye Candy: Kelly Lynch offers T&A (it's very early in the film, so after that scene's over cut & run...trust me)
My Grade: D-
The only saving grace is the always superb John Spencer as the lonely, creepy (but strangely loveable) Uncle Mike
A Troubled Release for this Film and the associated, not fully understood, Career Change for David Caruso and his Mysterious Inability to get Work, made this Film not fully Appreciated. Fans of Film-Noir and it's modern Grand-Child Neo-Noir could expect no less from this Movie.
Could stand beside John Dahl's early work like Red Rock West (1993) and Kill Me Again (1998).