Out of Time (2003) - Plot Summary Poster

(I) (2003)


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  • Matt Whitlock, the police chief of the small town of Banyan Key, Florida, is separated from his wife, Alex, a police homicide detective in MIami. Matt's been having an affair with Ann Merai Harrison, a woman who's separated from her abusive husband, Chris, and who says that she has cancer. When her doctor tells her of a new expensive treatment, Matt decides to give her the nearly half a million dollars in an evidence lock up that he seized from a local drug bust. When Ann and her husband turn up dead only days after naming Chief Whitlock as beneficiary on a million dollar Life insurance policy, things start heating up for Whitlock as the evidence his wife Alex is gathering stacks up against him. And as if things couldn't get worse, the D.E.A. now want the drug money a.s.a.p. Anxiety runs high for Whitlock as he scrambles to figure out who has set him up and also recover half a million dollars all while trying not to break a sweat or draw any suspicions. He's a man who is way out of his depth, nearly out of luck, and desperately close to being out of time.

  • Matt Lee Whitlock, respected chief of police in small Banyan Key, Florida, must solve a vicious double homicide before he himself falls under suspicion. Matt Lee has to stay a few steps ahead of his own police force and everyone he's trusted in order to find out the truth.

  • Matt Whitlock is the Chief of Police in a small town outside of Miami, Florida, living and working in a place that is normally reserved for those who have retired and spend the rest of their days relaxing in the sun. Although he enjoys his job, his drinking whilst on duty is an obvious flaw in his character, brought about in ways by his recent divorce from wife Alex. Whitlock is currently having an affair with a local resident, Ann Merai Harrison, whose abusive husband Chris has driven her to adultery. Recently diagnosed with terminal cancer, Ann Merai plans on rewarding Whitlock's loyalty to her with a handsome payout from her life insurance. After an apparent arson attack on their house kills Ann Merai and Chris, Alex arrives back on the scene as the detective in charge of the case - and Whitlock soon finds himself the prime suspect...

  • A Florida police chief must solve a vicious double homicide before he himself falls under suspicion.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • Chief Matthias Whitlock (Denzel Washington) gets a call from a woman about an intruder. He finishes his beer and heads over. She invites him in to her bedroom for the investigation, they end up on the bed kissing, it was a ruse and just foreplay. The chief gets another call interrupting the "assault with a deadly weapon" fun.

    In Banyan Key, FL, Chief Whitlock has breakfast in a cafe, he engages the owner, Chris Harrison (Dean Cain) with some edgy banter. Chris' wife, Ann (Sanaa Lathan) the caller from the previous evening, says hello politely.

    Matt goes to his office and meets his friend Jay (John Billingsley), the medical examiner. Ex wife Alex Diaz-Whitlock (Eva Mendes) comes asking for keys to get some stuff, Matt gives her a hard time.

    Matt goes fishing from his deck and Ann arrives her husband, is away for the weekend. They have a quickie in the hallway. Later in bed, Ann gets a call and has to leave. At Mercy Hospital Oncology she meets a Dr (Alex Carter) and has Matt there acting as her brother. The Dr says her cancer is out of remission, she has 6 months to live. Matt asks about alternative approaches, the Dr says they are expensive, no guarantees.

    Matt talks to a tearful Ann. There is a clinic in Switzerland with 17% success rate. Ann wants to break off the relationship.

    Matt buys flowers for her. Ann shows Matt a $1mil insurance policy her husband took out on her on her 32 birthday, her mother died at 33. Chris arrives and Matt slips out. Chris grills her about the Dr visit, they argued loudly. Matt knocks on the front door and says he is checking out a prowler.

    Ann calls Matt and says she had figured out how to get to Switzerland. She takes Matt to meet a guy who will give her $750k in return for being named the beneficiary on the insurance.

    Later she is upset, there Is a rule that one cannot change beneficiaries after 1 year, which is in 2 days.

    Matt and Jay have beers at a bar. Chris confronts him after Jay leaves. Chris hints he knows Ann is seeing another guy, Matt. Matt almost admits it is him as tensions rise between the two.

    Ann comes by Matt's house the next day apologetic. She gives him an envelope, making him the beneficiary. She is leaving town, needs some peace.

    Matt is served with divorce papers and is upset. He brings Ann police custody drug money to pay for Switzerland.

    Later, back at his house Jay is there but Matt herds him out. He tries to phone Ann, the phone keeps ringing. He drives to her house, it is dark. A motion sensor light comes on, the neighbor sees him. Matt leaves. Later the house explodes in flames.

    In the morning two burnt corpses are in the embers. Alex shows up, she is a homicide detective. The fire chief shows a device, it was arson. Alex catches a lift with Matt and apologizes for the divorce paper timing but says it has been 8 months.

    Alex and Matt go to Ann's work, her boss, a dentist, says she had cancer. A co-worker says she was having an affair, she received flowers. Matt fakes a call to the flower shop and reports the husband sent them. Next Alex plans to go to the oncologist, Matt begs off, they argue. Matt shows off his GPS device that allows him to track everyone on his force.

    She gets him to come but in the office, he goes to the washroom but stops when he hears the doctor's name. They see her doctor, a woman who says Ann was healthy. Matt rushes to the hospital office he was in with Ann, it is another Dr. Friedland, but he has no patient named Ann. Matt takes a gold pen in an envelope. In the car Alex is calling for phone records, Matt is nervous. Back at the cop shop the neighbor is giving info to a sketch artist. The woman says Matt was the man, no one believes her. Matt sends a junior staff to Miami with the pen to check fingerprints.

    The DEA (Terry Loughlin) calls and says they are coming for the evidence money that afternoon. Matt becomes very tense. A cop has found a lead on the insurance policy, Matt says he will track it down.

    At the fax machine Whitlock intercepts the incoming records with his name on the list. He scans the list and tries to edit the file. He re-sends it to the fax machine from his PC but then has to go and delete the first incoming resend from the phone company without anyone noticing.

    Jay arrives with the autopsy report.

    Then another cop shows up with cell phone records, there is one regular number, it is Matt's. He quickly uses his cell to turn off his voice mails. Jay is there, recognizes the number and tells Alex it is his. Outside, Matt comes clean to Jay and says he was setup, he gave Ann the drug money.

    The phone call comes in from Miami, the fingerprints on the pen are from Tony Cabot, an ex-con. Matt asks for the last known address, it is closeby.

    Matt goes with Jay to the address. It is deserted but they find a credit card statement in a trash can and Cabot's Mercy Hospital pass. They return to the station, Jay offers to drive him to the airport to go to Costa Rica. Matt says he is not running.

    At the office, the insurance company phones and on speakerphone tells the cops Chris Harrison was the beneficiary, but wait, there seems to be a change form coming, might be in the mail room. Alex asks him to find it and call back in half an hour.

    Matt finds out from the credit card company where the card was last used, a hotel in Miami. He hears Alex also asking about Paul Cabot in the squad room.

    As he is leaving two DEA agents arrive for the evidence money, DW buys time by telling them he sent it to their office, he has a telecon with their angry boss.

    In the hotel Cabot is on the phone with Chris, planning their escape.

    At the hotel Matt pretends to be Cabot and gets a new room key from the front desk, he goes up to room 715. Entering with gun drawn he is jumped by Cabot and the two men fight. They end up crashing through the slider onto the balcony, it collapses and both men hang in mid air. Finally Cabot falls to his death, Matt crawls back up and finds a briefcase, the money is there. Trying to leave, Alex arrives with backup, the front desk clerk points him out as Matt dashes to a stairwell, the chase is on, but Alex didn't get a good look at the runner. Then Matt re-appears and says he just got here too. In the confusion he manages to get out the back door with the money to his car. He calls Jay to say he has the money. Alex arrives at his car and says they need to talk.

    They go to a bar and talk about their relationship, then Alex asks Matt if wants to say anything, he doesn't. They return to Banyan Key in silence. Back in the squad, Alex once again looks at the cell phone records. She tells Matt the hotel clerk will be there in 30 minutes.

    A weeping Ann phones and says she is sorry but Chris made her do it, she still needs the money. Matt gets the address and ducks out the washroom window. The hotel clerk arrives.

    Alex looks again at the face sketch and clues in it is Matt. The call comes in, the new beneficiary is Matthias Whitlock. The three DEA agents show up asking to see Whitlock, Alex hears all the details about the $485,000.

    Jay is driving when the GPS unit in the glovebox beeps and he sees a dot flashing at Runyon Pt. A short time later his car breaks down.

    Matt arrives at a dark shack. He enters warily and sees a beaten Ann. Chris appears and starts shooting, a gunfight. Chris is out of ammo, trying to escape he is shot by Ann. She points the gun at Matt, and admits she was behind it all. She shoots Matt in the thigh but before she can kill him as he screams, Alex shoots and kills her from behind. Alex checks the briefcase and only sees a GPS tracking unit.

    The rest of the police arrive, Alex gives a plausible explanation. The three DEA agents arrive demanding the money, just then Jay arrives with the satchel, saying there was a mistake with the address.

    As Matt is loaded into an ambulance Alex asks if he loved Ann he says no, but was just stupid.

    Later, Matt is fishing from his deck. Alex arrives relaxed and friendly talking about moving her stuff. Jay arrives with mail, the insurance company informing him he is to get $1 mil. Alex says he can't accept it as conflict of interest. Matt agrees as Alex says she is moving back in together.

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