A stressed out fashion model Chloe is invited by an acquaintance to a dinner party with some friends of his in a house far from London. She faints and when she wakes up, everybody has left ... See full summary »
Sadism and masochism beneath a veneer of revenge. Lou Ford is a mild-mannered sheriff's deputy in a Texas oil town in the mid 1950's. His boss sends him to roust a prostitute living in a rural house. She slaps him; he hits her, then, after daily sex for the next few weeks, he decides it's love. She's devoted to him and becomes his pawn in a revenge plot she thinks is to shakedown the son of Chester Conway, the town's wealthy king of construction. Lou has a different plan, and bodies pile up as murder leads to murder. The district attorney suspects Lou, and Conway may have an inkling, but Lou stays cool. Is love, or at least peace, in the cards? Written by
The piece of music that Lou plays on his piano is the 25th variation of J.S. Bach's Goldberg Variations. It was regarded by musicians such as Glenn Gould and Wanda Landowska as one of the most significant pieces of music ever written, even within the context of the entire set of variations which is generally held to be one of Bach's greatest masterpieces. Gould's 1955 recording of this variation was included in the soundtrack to the film Slaughterhouse 5 during scenes portraying the firestorm that destroyed Dresden. See more »
When walking back to his car after the first murder, Lou is carrying only his hat. When the camera angle changes to show him from behind, he suddenly has a wooden plank in his hand for no apparent reason. See more »
Sheriff Bob Maples:
Name of Joyce Lakeland. Lives about four or five miles out on Derrick Road past the old Branch place.
Oh, I know the old Branch place. She a hustling lady, Bob?
Sheriff Bob Maples:
Well, I guess so, but she's - she's been pretty decent about it.
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One Hand Loose
Written by Joe D. Chastain, Charlie Feathers (as Charlie A. Feathers) and Jerry D. Huffman
Performed by Charlie Feathers
Courtesy of Gusto-King Records and Fort Knox Music Inc. c/o Carlin America Inc. and Trio Music Company c/o Bug Music See more »
Greetings again from the darkness. The film is based upon the work of crime novelist Jim Thompson, who is quite famous as a writer and whose works have often been translated to film. This time oft-creepy director Michael Winterbottom is in charge and comes pretty close to creating a masterpiece. Unfortunately, the bits that fall short, very nearly ruin the film.
Psychological crime thrillers can be the most fascinating genre (see Inception), but only when the lead psycho is relatable in some sense and the story is complete. Here, Casey Affleck gives an outstanding performance as the dude you don't want your daughter to date. There is a deep darkness hidden behind his aw-shucks facade of innocence and cutesy west Texas drawl.
The violence is expected, yet still shocking, when it first rears its head on poor Jessica Alba. We feel the first punch. What happens in this first encounter catches us off-guard and leaves us wanting to know more background on Affleck's character. Instead, we are really only spectators in his plan of violence that seems to have no real goal. Think Natural Born Killers. Heck, even Ted Bundy had a real plan!
The creepiness factor is upped a bit since most everyone associated with the crimes seems to suspect Affleck's character, but no one knows what to do or how to stop him. Elias Koteas and Simon Baker (miscast) are two who try. Personally I wanted more of the Koteas character as well as Ned Beatty, who plays a powerful developer against whom Affleck holds a grudge.
Bill Pullman is tossed in near the end to help wrap things up, but mostly the ending is as unsatisfying as the rest of the story. It is uncomfortable to watch Affleck's character, so devoid of morals and empty of soul, but it feels wasted on a small town deputy sheriff with no vision. Maybe that's not such a bad thing ... but it makes for a much weaker film.
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