With the help of a mysterious pill that enables the user to access 100 percent of his brain abilities, a struggling writer becomes a financial wizard, but it also puts him in a new world with lots of dangers.
Doesn't attempt to recreate, and reconstructs the story from the inside out.
Ominous and tense throughout, "Blue Caprice" is a slow burn that builds to an unsettling boil, leaving you with a known outcome that's hard to digest. Director Alexandre Moors crafts a deceptively eerie depiction of Lee Malvo and John Allen Muhammad, and to its credit, the movie never pretends to have the answer. Moors stunning debut captures a horrific and confining tone of the tragic three weeks in October of 2002, when ten people were assassinated in a random series of attacks spanning across Washington DC, Maryland, and Virginia. "Blue Caprice" features two fantastic performances from Isaiah Washington and Tequan Richmond portraying the Beltway Snipers, John Allen Muhammad and Lee Malvo.
The movie begins on the Caribbean Island of Antigua, where life is not easy for a young Lee Malvo (Tequan Richmond), who is left to fend for himself after his mother abandons him once again. Muhammad spots Lee who appears as if he is drowning, rescues him, and becomes an adoptive father figure. Moors uses Lee Malvo as the audience's entry point into Muhammad's world, and John's back story comes only in pieces. However, it doesn't take much to surmise that Muhammad is trouble.
Flash forward a few months, and Muhammad has successfully smuggled Malvo into the United States, returning to Washington, where they stay with John's old friend Ray (Tim Blake Nelson), and his wife Jamie (Joey Lauren Adams). When Ray introduces Malvo to his gun collection to blow off steam, both men recognize the raw talent Lee possesses. Muhammad then begins to mold Malvo into a mindless assassin, eliminating any shred morality that may still lie within. This bond between the two progressively develops into a powerful, warped father-son style relationship. As the blind loyalty grows, we learn of John's grandiose scheme to create widespread mayhem and terror, starting with random killings following no discernible pattern.
Moors directorial approach is consistent throughout, using restraint and creating distance from the actual assassination scenes. For example, he presents the reactions of Malvo shooting his weapon, rather than what is happening at the other end of the gun. A victim is only seen briefly as their body falls to the ground, while the Caprice slowly glides away.
Moors creates a disturbing portrait of two ruthless men in free fall, and Isaiah Washington and Tequan Richmond both do outstanding work here. Washington has the extraordinarily difficult task of methodically revealing John's inner rage, resentments, and hatred that simmers just beneath his calm exterior. He's both ferociously charismatic as well as deeply unsettling. Even more so impressive is the performance of Tequan Richmond, who must convey emotions, or lack thereof, in a character who rarely speaks of feelings at all. It's the sense of not knowing that makes his marvelous performance so chilling. The film owes a lot to its excellent cast, as well as the cinematography, and a sharp, minimalistic screenplay by R.F.I. Porto.
What makes the film so exceptional is that it doesn't attempt to recreate, and instead reconstructs the story from the inside out. This was a distorted, horrific mission carried out through manipulation and the escalation of evil. "Blue Caprice" generates an innermost sense of riding in the backseat with these two, only to leave you with introspection and muddled thoughts that linger long after the viewing.
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