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Well worth a look! Both Jolie and Washington are on form
denise_kate9 March 2005
I've read quite a few comments on this movie and some of them I disagree with and others I don't. Sure, it may be a little predictable and a bit 'all been done before' but there is a certain level of originality and uniqueness to it also.

For starters it has a fantastic cast and both lead actors (Jolie and Washington)have won Oscars and thats says something. It can't be easy playing a paralysed man and remaining so still and wooden and he plays the frustrations and emotions so realistically that I would imagine a person actually would be like in real life. Jolie is charming, composed and works well with the camera. Her character is convincing enough and this goes for her performance.The support cast is fantastic too, especially Queen Latifa.

The film may have the usual iconographic elements found in the psychological thriller genre but they are necessary for it to firstly conform and also progress. 'The Bone Collector' introduces new techniques and a slightly different angle for the viewer. there has to be a certain amount of repetition with this genre for it to work and this is the case for many others, such as romantic comedies and a couple falling in love or teen flicks with a football jock character.

I am currently writing my degree dissertation on sexual subjectivity in psychological thrillers and this film is perfect for that. The changing levels of gendered representations is very interesting and both supports and detracts away from the current representations in society.

I say, give it a go! Don't listen to people who have already seen it and didn't like it. If I'd have done that then I wouldn't have given it a go and my dissertation would have been short of argument!
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Dark, suspenseful thriller worth seeing
jimjba7 July 2001
Denzel Washington plays a former cop who is injured in the line of duty and becomes a crime scene investigator and expert witness in the service of law firms. Angelina Jolie plays a cop who is struggling to find a place within a male-dominated police culture, and shows a talent for crime scene investigation, which Denzel's character immediately recognizes and appreciates, since he is bedridden and physically unable to go to most crime scenes. She is reluctant to get involved, but does wind up grudgingly serving as his eyes and ears as they try to follow clues left by a serial killer who gives clues about his next victims and taunts them and the police.

While Denzel's character is almost too brilliant to be believable, if you can overlook that you should thoroughly enjoy this movie. Denzel and Angelina, together with cops of varying competence, try to follow the clues given to them by the serial killer, who gives them clues before the killing actually occurs.

Most people who enjoy a dark, suspenseful movie (such as Silence of the Lambs) should thoroughly enjoy this movie.
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Good film, no wasted time
reve-211 October 2000
I am one of those older folks who doesn't care for the kind of movies that are made these days. As such, my movie watching is generally confined to old classic films ala TCM and AMC. But, I do subscribe to all of the premium channels via DirecTV and, occasionally, watch a newer film if the plot synopsis appears to be one that I may be able to tolerate. I have read all of the previous reviews of this film on the IMDB and find them very interesting. Many of the reviews mention a movie titled "Seven". I have never heard of, much less seen, "Seven". I consider this fact to be a fortunate one because I was able to watch "The Bone Collector" without having to constantly compare it to a previous film. In short, I liked this movie. I was entertained royally precisely because I didn't take the story line too seriously. There was not much time wasted on character development. GOOD !! I don't need to know why the characters became the persons that they are. I simply want them to get on with whatever they must do. Another thing that I liked was the lack of sex scenes, which seem to be almost a necessity it today's movies. The two leads did a great job and their chemistry was excellent. Mr. Washington and Ms. Jolie were very believable. The killer? No big deal. I couldn't have cared less who did the killings. I simply waited for justice to be done. In short, I don't agree with any of the harsh criticism that I have read on this forum. I guess that's because I am a rather down to earth person who has no need to turn watching a movie into an academic exercise, complete with thorough analysis of character motivation, etc.
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my opinion may not be shared with most critics, but I liked this movie
TheUnknown837-118 October 2008
I am fully aware of the fact that most film critics here in the United States did not approve very highly of the 1999 Denzel Washington film "The Bone Collector". But despite the fact that only twenty-eight percent of them would agree with me, I think that "The Bone Collector" is a well-made mystery thriller with solid performances, especially toward Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie, a good plot, great tension, and a well-executed story.

Academy Award-winner Denzel Washington plays a quadriplegic detective who is asked to help with an investigation dealing with a serial killer operating in New York. He appoints a rather reluctant female detective played by Angelina Jolie to lead the investigation outside his hospital room since he cannot walk himself. He communicates with her through radio, giving her hints and tactics as they try to figure out who the killer is, who he will strike next, and how they can stop him.

Yes, this plot is one that has been reused many times and this yet another case. But just because you reuse a plot does not mean the end product is going to be horrible and not entertaining. I myself enjoyed "The Bone Collector" and did not find one scene where I was bored, even though I had a pretty good idea on what was going to happen next. It gets a strong rating for its performances, action scenes, and good general entertainment value.
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Quite a fine thriller.
Jack the Ripper188812 June 2002
I was very pleasantly surprised at this film. Denzel Washington proves again that he can handle any role that he chooses to play. In this case, he plays homicide inspector, Lincoln Rhyme who has been nearly paralyzed after suffering from an accident in the line of duty. But now, when a mysterious killer begins killing off people in a very peculiar matter, he must team with a hard-headed rookie cop (Angelina Jolie) to solve the crimes. Supporting cast includes Queen Latifah, Michael Rooker, Mike McGlone, Luis Guzman, Leland Orser and Ed O'Neil.

I like the way they have the killer as an intelligent person. Someone who has a knowledge of what he is doing. And the way he leaves clues for the cops to follow. To come up with something this perfect, you must a genius. While not really scary, this suspense thriller is actually thrilling as opposed to the many number of "thrillers" that are not even thrilling. (Example: HANGMAN). Thank you Hollywood for giving us THE BONE COLLECTOR. This is a good one. Highly recommended.....5/5.
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Dark And Moody
Lechuguilla15 May 2007
A bed ridden, paraplegic NYC detective, Lincoln Rhyme (Denzel Washington), teams up with a rookie cop named Amelia (Angelina Jolie) to try and catch a serial killer, in this dark, moody atmospheric thriller from Director Phillip Noyce. This is a fine thriller.

From the get-go viewers understand that an intelligent maniac is on the loose, and could strike at any time. That is the very definition of cinematic tension. In addition, the killer uses dark, subterranean spaces to torture and kill victims. That inky darkness, together with a haunting musical score further amplifies suspense.

But, the solution to the whodunit puzzle is ultimately unsatisfying because the screenwriter withholds important back-story from viewers. This could have been so easily fixed with the addition of a line or two of dialogue and/or a brief added scene near the film's beginning. Even so, good plot misdirection creates ample red herrings, so that the killer's identity is not a foregone conclusion.

The film's cinematography, production design, and editing are fine. Washington does a good job as the paralyzed cop. But Angelina Jolie is miscast; she pouts her way through the film looking like she's bored out of her mind. The support cast helps a lot, with highly credible performances from delightful Queen Latifah, capable Ed O'Neill, and reliable Michael Rooker.

The crime scenes tended unfortunately to be in-your-face grizzly. But at least the gore quotient was minimal.

For dark, moody serial killer films set in NYC, I prefer "Sea Of Love" (1989). Nevertheless, "The Bone Collector" can be enjoyed for its elevated level of suspense, its fine cinematography, and its generally high level of acting. Be advised, however, that the film's finale may be a disappointment if you expect all the whodunit puzzle pieces to fall into place, neat and tidy.
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The Bone Collector is a dark gritty crime thriller that is rather underrated.
TheMovieDiorama27 February 2018
An extremely overlooked film in my opinion. Yes, Se7en and Silence of the Lambs absolutely annihilate this, but for a 90's detective case it's rather compelling. This is what happens when you cast two great leads, a decent film is produced. Much like any other serial killer story, our main characters must find out who the homicidal maniac is before they kill again. The difference is, the forensic expert is paralysed and so he trains an unwilling rookie to solve the case. Murder case aside, it's all about passing on knowledge and skills to another peer in order to complete a task. Rhyme is unable to do anything, so he envisages his own image within Amelia. Turning her from a rookie cop to the perfect forensic investigator. Highlighting the importance of communication and trust. Fortunately Washington and Jolie have decent on screen chemistry. Both their talents put together to create an explosion of raw acting. Jolie plays a tough yet vulnerable officer, Washington juxtaposes this with an experienced performance. The two amalgamate to create the perfect crime solving entity. The crime scenes themselves were visceral and not easy watches, particularly being scolded to death by oncoming steam. I loved the gritty realism that is sustained throughout. It evokes a sense of mystery, we are attempting to solve the case with the characters. Supporting cast were good, nothing outstanding. Although I wanted more Queen Latifah! The killer's reveal was a letdown unfortunately. The final twenty minutes were rushed to what was an intelligently paced thriller. And thank God we don't have those horrible slow motion frames that were all so apparent in the 90s...just hideously generic. The Bone Collector is a damn good watch, and for any Washington or Jolie fans you are in for a great time.
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Fingering the killer
Prismark1010 April 2018
The Bone Collector is a serial killer thriller in the vein of Seven. Here the gruesome deaths are hinted at rather than shown in a gory visceral manner.

Denzel Washington is Lincoln Rhyme, a paraplegic detective now bedridden who needs round the clock care after an accident. Rhyme was a brilliant forensic detective who wrote several books on the subject.

Now his superiors want his help as a maniac pretending to be a cab driver, is abducting victims, torturing and killing them yet leaving clues behind for Rhyme to solve. He is assisted by a rookie cop, Amelia (Angelina Jolie) who acts as his physical being as she goes does the leg work and goes out out to the subterranean dark lairs where the victims have been held.

As the film progresses it almost seems like a chess game is being played with Rhyme, the clues are aimed at Rhyme somehow as if the killer is taunting Rhyme, like they might have dealt with each other in the past.

Director Phillip Noyce uses the film such as Sea of Love as a template for misdirection. It even has Michael Rooker playing a police chief, he played the villain in Sea of Love, initially appearing in a small scene.

However the ending was rather cheesy with some campy lines and the motive of the killer felt like a bolt from the blue. Still it is an entertaining thriller but not up to the standards of Seven, Sea of Love or The Silence of the Lambs.
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Not a horrible movie, just a recycled one. Everybody is too familiar with the plot. ** (out of four).
Movie-128 January 2001
THE BONE COLLECTOR / (1999) ** (out of four)

By Blake French:

Everybody has seen it, the notorious suspense thriller in which a serial killer madman plays cat and mouse games with a distressed cop; seldom are movies as predictable, dispensable, or formulaic. One of the most recent in this generation's trend of serial killer movies is called "The Bone Collector," and stars Golden Globe winning actor Denzel Washington and the sexy actress, Angelina Jolie. As often true, the production is well acted, directed with focus and precision by Philip Noyce ("The Saint," "Patriot Games"), and creates an appropriate mood for its characters. But even big stars and a appropriate atmosphere cannot save a movie this familiar and predictable.

Denzel Washington plays a heroic cop named Lincoln Rhyme. He is an underdeveloped character, however, the screenplay supplies him with a vast reputation and experiences as a cop; he has written a dozen books on crime scene tactics and his mind in an encyclopedia of crime solving methods. As the movie opens, he is paralyzed at a crime site, leaving him bedridden in his Manhattan apartment with control of only a single index finger. His headquarters is decorated with all sorts of high-tech gadgets and a kind nurse named Thelma (Queen Latifah), who is always there for him when he goes into violent seizures.

A few gruesome murders transpire, leaving a rookie cop, Amelia Donaghy (Angelina Jolie), whose assistance is selected by the paralyzed but smart cop who uses her as his body to stop the psychopathic serial killer. The killer uses a taxi cap to lure his victims to their final and disturbing death. What is most bothersome about this production is that it teases us with intriguing implications of the graphic murders instead of portraying guts and irony by exploiting the supposedly grotesque images.

The production consists mainly of sequences in which various characters loom in dark hallways, allies, rooms, or sets designed specifically for the killer to lurk around in. Of course there is plenty of suspenseful music and a few surprising moments, but the actual story greatly lacks imagination and edge. Angelina Jolie is the movie's standout performance, but she is mainly used as a plot device to explore such areas as listed above.

"The Bone Collector" is not a horrible movie, just a recycled one. The material has been experienced so many times before we can never become too involved in the story or too interested with the characters. What bothers me most is how this kind of story has no cause or purpose; the serial killer's motive, as always, is explained during the climax sequence, and is disposable and contrived. Why do screenwriters create killers with disturbing motives, but no reasoning behind them? Kind of defeats the purpose of rationalism, doesn't it.
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Dark and tense, but ultimately lazy story telling
bob the moo11 January 2002
When NYPD cop Amelia Donaghy uncovers a mutilated corpse she shows a natural eye for detail and preserving crime scenes. When the killer turns out to be a serial killer leaving clues to his next crime, NYPD turn to the paralysed ex-forensics cop, Rhyme to help them piece together the clues. With Rhymes bedridden, Donaghy becomes his eyes, ears and legs as she walks the scenes under his guidance to uncover the trail.

This is a star vehicle - two Oscar winners and some good supporting actors (Luis Guzman, Michael Rooker to name two). However the plot is below the Washington and Jolie. It is the old "killer taunting cops to catch him" chestnut. It is slightly spiced up by the use of forensics etc and watching Washington putting together the logical clues is quite fun - mainly because you get the feeling that you're right there with him and that it all makes sense. However most of it doesn't makes sense, a lot of the forensics is bull and relies of coincidence or Washington dragging facts from the back of his head. This is a shame because it feels like the film is just being lazy at times and is cheating us out of logic. This laziness feeds right through to the ending - if you thought that the Scream films were lazy and stupid wait till you see the stupid ending to this! Up till this the film does have plenty of horrible scenes and lots of tense bits with Jolie walking round in the dark with the killer potentially just round the corner.

Jolie is good and deals with her character well - despite the fact that a beat cop would never just be able to become a crime scene officer on the whim of an ex-cop. Washington deals well with his character being paralysed for the whole film but does get a bit silly at the end where he fights the killer with just his head! Support is fine - but Guzman is not as good as he usually is.

Overall this is a B movie that got an A movie budget. The film is dark and tense but ultimately a bit lazy and blows it totally with a stupid lazy conclusion.
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Hey Hollywood, we've seen this before
jaylewis-29 November 1999
I can envision the writers of this story thinking up this script:

1.Let's make a serial killer movie like Se7en, Knight Moves, Copycat, and Silence of the Lambs. People like serial killer stuff. It'll sell... 2.The killer needs to adopt some sort of pattern. I know; he'll copy it out of a serial killer mystery novel. That hasn't been done yet, at least not exactly like that. 3.Now, we need some kind of way to make this movie unique; of course, the good guy can be bedridden like in Rear Window. 4.Lastly, we need a twist ending that will give this movie the success of The Sixth Sense and The Usual Suspects.

Okay, now that you know these things, you know the whole movie, so don't waste your money. One thing I really hate about moviemakers is that they take a perfectly good concept for movies and completely run them into the ground. I wrote better stories than this when I was in Junior High. I just kept checking my watch every five minutes. When the twist ending finally came, I wasn't shocked, I just said, "Oh. Who cares?!" The characters are two-dimensional. They have your typical movie personalities. This movie is just proof that stealing the elements of other successful movies is no excuse for a bad script. I give this movie 1 out of 10. Normally, it would earn at least 2 or 3, but I'm so sick of the unoriginality. When will they learn? 1/10
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Good thriller; didn't understand the bad reviews
danielll_rs4 February 2000
One time, when I was about 11 years old, I rented a film called "The Silence of the Lambs", and... Wow! I can't describe the the feelings I had. It was the best film I had seen till that moment, and it is on my mind until today.

In my opinion, this was the inspiration for all the other thrillers which came out after 1991, specially those ones with a serial killer. Some time after that, I rented "Se7en", which was for me wicked, claustrophobic (in the good way), brilliant, almost as good as "The Silence of the Lambs". Taking those two films, almost all the other serial killer thrillers were a big waste, specially "Kiss the Girls". However, "The Bone Collector" was released in 1999. But, for some reason, it received many bad reviews. I really don't agree with them.

The theme of "The Bone Collector", despite the fact that it has already been used in many other films, is really interesting. I won't say much about it to preserve your entertaining, but I can say it is very suspenseful, dark, well-written, well-directed and well-acted. Denzel Washington gives another great performance as the paralitic detective, but the big star is really Angelina Jolie. She's very, very pretty and talented, and has a GREAT future. She has been keeping my attention since the TV movie "Gia", and surprised me last year in the wonderful "Playing By Heart". I'm very glad that she won the Golden Globe for "Girl, Interrupted", and I hope she wins the Oscar for that part. Angelina deserves it for walk one more step on her brilliant career. Her acting in "The Bone Collector" is not different. Her dialogues with Denzel Washington in the film are intense and provoking, and without her the film would have been a little lost.

So, when you see "The Bone Collector", try to forget the bad reviews and have fun. It is not "The Silence of the Lambs". It is not "Se7en". But it is a fine film if you want to feel your hands cold and your heart beating fast. And appreciate Angelina's beauty.

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Just when you thought Noyce couldn't do any worse...
el_monty_BCN17 January 2002
Bad directors are generally a lot more reliable than good directors, in the sense that even the greatest of directors can make a poor movie every once in a while, but bad directors hardly ever let you down: They keep churning out turkey after turkey without ever a trace of intrusive talent or inventiveness seeping into their works.

Phillip Noyce is a prime example of this. In my opinion, he is one of the very worst directors, not only working today, but in the whole history of Hollywood cinema (he's got Ed Wood beaten by a mile); and this view is reinforced every time I watch (or, more appropriately, endure) one of his "films" (I would call them something else, but bad language will prevent this review from being posted I'm afraid). I'm not sure if the problem lies in his limited capabilities for the art of storytelling, or in his appalling penchant for choosing wretched screenplays, but the truth is that all of them (and I regret to admit I have seen no less than six) have made me wonder whether to laugh or cry at their incompetence, or simply go to sleep from the boredom.

The Bone Collector is, of course, no exception. In fact, I think Noyce has outdone himself with it, as it is an exceptionally terrible movie. I cannot find a single redeeming feature in it. For one, Jolie is quite obviously miscast, and even the usually solid Washington takes this as an opportunity to overact (Well, It's not like there's any actor's director around on set to restrain him, is there?). The storyline is absurd from its very inception, and I find it extremely hilarious that it pretends to be about the elusive science of evidence-gathering, when this kind of left-there-on-purpose evidence that only a movie killer would leave, is precisely the one kind that requires no talent at all to find. BECAUSE IT IS RIGHT THERE. And then the investigations made from this evidence seems to follow little logic other than Rhyme's whims and *intuitions*, or risible strokes of luck. The film keeps throwing one-or-two-line characters at you so that you wonder which one the killer might be (oh how very exciting), but still the ending won't fail to underwhelm you.

I have to admit one thing: this pathetic excuse for a film kept me hooked not because it was interesting, but because I was morbidly curious to find out how dire it could become as it went on. But of course, that's because I saw it on TV, and I didn't have to pay a ticket; I swore years ago (more precisely, after I saw the narcolepsy-inducing Clear and Present Danger) that they would only take me to the cinema to watch a Phillip Noyce movie if I was WRAPPED IN CHAINS.

Note: This review was written before Noyce directed Rabbitproof Fence. OK, so it turns out he IS able to make a decent film. But it doesn't change the fact that the rest of his output is awful.
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The Yawn Collector
cLoNe15 January 2001
A formulaic story with all the tired cliches. I was shocked that the horrible script became a movie! What a waste! How many ORIGINAL scripts are scattered around without being produced?

At the climax I could predict what will happen in every single shot.

Oh, and don't even get me started about the idiotic sexual tension between the gorgeous female cop and the paralyzed cop who can barely move a finger. YEAH RIGHT. I CAN BUY THAT. What next? Fingers porn?
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Fair good film ruined by two major pitfalls
mattrochman14 August 2006
The film making, suspense, horror and general build up of this film is terrific. It was engaging and had me on the edge of my seat. Furthermore, I really enjoy murder mystery films where the killer leaves cryptic clues that a only a gifted cop can unravel. OK... it's a done to death formula. But I still enjoy the "genre" and individual creativity within this formula.

But there are two major pitfalls. First, the background of Angelina Jolie's character is absurd. A supermodel who became a street cop? Come on!!! You don't have to explain why these everyday characters are so beautiful. None of my doctors look as good as the ones in ER, but I will hold it against them if they start inserting the "I was going to be a model but I decided to go to med school instead" explanations.

Second, when the killer is revealed, the whole thing seems a bit convenient or co-incidental. One thing I appreciated about seven and copycat was that the killer was simply the killer - he wasn't someone we encountered earlier in the film.

Much like kiss the girls, where the killer turned out to be one of the homicide detectives, it feels that we need to have a "shock" ending by revealing that the killer was an unsuspecting character that kept popping up throughout the film; one who "we never would have guessed." Lame! But a good film nonetheless
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mattkratz26 March 2001
The best parts of this movie are the actors and the suspense. Good performances, especially by Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie, and a suspenseful atmosphere highlighted an otherwise routine thriller. The twist of the main character being a quadraplegic was also a plus.

You might like the book better. It provides more insight into the characters and storylines.

*** out of ****
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Some all time lows
rob_fernandes9 October 2000
I wouldn't recommend this to anyone, except cinema-goers who like to laugh at a film, not with it.

Quite a promising premise and set of actors get progressively worse over a film which ends with perhaps the worst ending ever seen in a film. I won't spoil it, but basically the most over-used set of movie cliches get done badly and half heartedly for the most disappointing last five minutes to any film, ever.

The movie also includes the most cringe inducing scene ever, the attempt at on-screen chemistry between the two lead roles when we're presented with a close up of Angela Jolie stroking Denzel Washington's finger lovingly. It may be the only thing he could move, but quite why the viewer is treated to a zoom of Washington's finger getting stroked amidst the kind of dimmed lights and music appropriate for a sex scene is beyond me. I laughed out loud and shook my head.

The direction of the storyline borrows heavily from Se7en, but here it is executed far more simplistically, and far too obviously. To call it a poor-mans Se7en would be an understatement, this really is nothing more than a made for TV movie and even Jolie and Washington's best efforts can't convince that this is a box office film.
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Above Average Serial Killer Flick, But Ruined By a Ridiculous Ending...
MovieAddict20163 March 2003
The Bone Collector

The serial-killer genre received a big boost over a decade ago when 'The Silence of the Lambs' was released; Hannibal Lector himself spawned a newfound interest in not the slasher genre of the eighties, but of the psychological slashers.

Unfortunately, like all movies and their genres, they simply get…old. I'm tired of serial killer movies that try to cash in on the success of 'The Silence of the Lambs.' We've had countless films over the years since 'Silence' that are just tragic rehashes of each other with predictable and ridiculous endings.

Now we have 'The Bone Collector,' another typical 'psychological thriller' brought to life by a great cast and director.

Angelina Jolie plays the cop-on-the-streets who discovers a corpse next to a railroad. She immediately sparks interest in herself as the chief of police starts watching over her more, and a paraplegic man named Lincoln (Denzel Washington) summons her to his home to ask her a simple question.

Washington wants Jolie to help him catch the killer.

Denzel Washington plays Lincoln, a man who used to be big but is now immobile. His only moveable joint below his neck is a single finger, which he uses to click a computer mouse by his bed. He is watched over by Queen Latifah, a caring woman, sure, but not exactly loving.

'The Bone Collector,' based on the novel of the same name by Jeffery Deaver, could easily have slipped into the average slot, but because of a great cast, is just good enough to recommend. There are some gut-wrenching scenes in 'The Bone Collector,' but then there are some scenes (including the end) that recede into the stereotypical psychological thriller.

Director Phillip Noyce uses some great shadowing and a dark, moody atmosphere to bring the surroundings of his film to life. Exterior shots are dark and withdrawn, and interior shots are almost brighter. It is as if the darkness symbolizes the chemistry in the characters. The more Denzel talks to Jolie the brighter the room gets; when they are outside it is darker. Why? Because she doesn't know anyone outside. It is as if the surroundings are tailored around her character's emotions. She's happy, it's bright. She sad, it's dark. Etc…

All in all, I was going to give 'The Bone Collector' a higher recommendation than three stars before I saw the ending, but it turned out to be quite ridiculous and average; plus, it was very predictable. I guessed it before it happened.

3/5 stars –

John Ulmer
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Not bad, just too formulaic all.
Boba_Fett113824 June 2008
Basically this is a movie that offers nothing new. It's a typical genre movie with all of the typical elements and twists. It's not a bad movie, it's just not original and surprising enough.

"The Bone Collector" is your typical average thriller. Whenever I have to mention an average and typical thriller, "The Bone Collector" always springs to mind. It's an average movie in basically every way thinkable and is only made interesting and worthwhile to watch thanks to the presence of Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie.

Phillip Noyce is not really a favorite actor of mine. His movies always seem to lack in style and they are well made but yet in a very simplistic manner. He's a director that hardly takes any risks with his movies, with as a result that all of his works are typical and average movies, that often add very little new to the genre.

But I think still the biggest problem with this movie is its story. It's just too standard and formulaic. Basically when you've seen only a couple of thrillers before in your life, you've also already seen "The Bone Collector", since it adds so little new to the genre. The story progresses in a predictable manner and the story also features the usual expected twists and turns in it. On top of that some story elements and characters just don't work out in the movie.

It's the type of thriller in which basically every male character is a suspect but yet the movie doesn't mange to become truly suspenseful or surprising. Therefor it as a thriller also just isn't the most effective movie around.

Luckily the movie still has a good cast. I can't imaging how this movie would had been like with a different cast filled with unknowns. Denzel Washington plays a good role, even though he plays a character that is bound to his bed and has lost almost all of his body functions. The movie is an early Angelina Jolie movie, or at least its from the time period before her real glory days but she obviously already shows her talent in this movie, although I think that her character isn't always handled well but this was perhaps more the director fault. The love story between Washington and Jolie also doesn't really feel credible and perhaps the movie would had been better off without it. Besides them two, the movie also features some other fine actors in supporting roles such as the always surprising great Queen Latifah, Michael Rooker, Luis Guzmán, Leland Orser and Ed O'Neill in an early serious movie role from him.

It's an average movie and therefor nothing too bad but just don't expect anything brilliant or original either.

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Okay, But Needed Less Lip-Service
ccthemovieman-11 April 2006
Here's another interesting modern-day serial killer saga which keeps your attention the full two hours. Although grisly in parts, it doesn't overdo the violence.

However, once again we have the too-often case of an ending where the villain talks instead of shoots and, of course, he pays for it. Why oh why does this annoying scenario play out so many times in movies? It's so annoying and stupid and ruins many a good show.

Acting-wise, Denzel Washington gives another likable performance and we get to see Angelina Jolie's King Kong-collagen type lips which are ludicrous. She's too profane and hard-looking for this old-fashioned reviewer, anyway. I'd rate this movie higher with a different lead actress.
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The definition of mediocrity
nightwishouge16 April 2018
The Bone Collector isn't bad. It's not boring, insulting, stupid, or cynically made. But it's not good, either. It's competent. It's uninspired. Everything about it rises exactly to the level of mere "adequacy". In the wake of Silence of the Lambs, there was a barrage of cat-and-mouse serial killer movies and techno-thrillers. The Bone Collector does nothing to distinguish itself from the glut.

Probably the only thing worth commenting on is the cast. I watched this movie after watching Gia and remembering what a brilliant and promising actress Angelina Jolie was at the dawn of her career. (I still like her. But she hasn't been acting much lately.) She does what she can with the role, believably haunted when she needs to be, intelligent and determined throughout. But there's just not much to the character. The same is true for Denzel Washington, unquestionably a great actor but constrained by an underwritten role. The two leads have good chemistry, but it felt more like mentor-mentee chemistry than romantic chemistry. Still, the movie wants us to think they need to fall in love. Michael Rooker, a solid character actor by anyone's measure, is given an entirely one-note character to play, a detective or something who is higher up on the food chain who blocks Lincoln Rhyme at every turn for no better reason than that every techno-thriller needs one of these guys. He decides he doesn't like Angie because early on in the film she stops a train to preserve a crime scene positioned on the subway tracks. No attempt is ever made by the screenwriters to justify his behavior. Luis Guzman is fun in an unspectacular "quirky tech guy" part.

There's nothing in The Bone Collector you haven't seen before, but if you're writing a textbook on the cliches of late-90s filmmaking, a viewing of this one will provide all the material you need.
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I really enjoyed this
danielmanson10 February 2021
I'm genuinely baffled by the amount of low rated reviews for this film, because I honestly really enjoyed it. I was gripped from the first minute until the last. It's a real dark, gritty crime thriller that's well worth the watch.

The acting from Jolie and Denzel were both fantastic and really sold their characters well. The plot was definitely gripping and had you on the edge of your seat. Wondering who the killer is or will they catch them? The intensity and suspense is built throughout really well and is just overall a really interesting watch.

I will say that the ending wasn't so much of a "twist" as I had imagined and I could kind of see where the killer was heading around the midway region. However, the build up to the end and the overall plot more than makes up for it. It's the journey. Jolie's character the first hour or so is a proper pain in the ass as well, keeps whining and I was sat there thinking I don't want to deal with her for 2 hours, but her arc was really good and in the end you love her.

Overall I really enjoyed this. I'd say it's like a slightly worse Se7en. So if you enjoyed that film you'd probably enjoy this one.
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Don't believe the low rating
nathanmanson15 February 2021
I've put off watching this film for ages because of the low rating but it's actually so good. I always love a denzel film and this is another to add to the list. Denzel and Angelina are an unlikely combo but I thought they worked very well together. I was expecting a bad ending because the film was so good but that rating is bad so i thought it must be the ending but it's a really good ending.
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Awful waste of time...
Obscure7 October 1999
Wow -- this movie was really bad! You talk about formulaic, typical movie plot? Watching this movie was like hitting my head repeatedly against a brick wall. The transitions kept trying to be cool but failed. The plot twist at the end, where we find out who the bad guy is was unexpected, but doesn't make much sense until his monologue. Even then... The amount of gore in this movie doesn't help either. Are all of those images necessary? My last complaint is about the plausibility of chunks of the movie. Would the PD really send a lone officer into an unlit warehouse, subway tunnel, or wherever to find a body, when the location of the perp is unknown? And why does the romance at the end just kind of happen all of a sudden? It's like the writer was trying to fit in every Hollywood cliche he could. Don't waste your time seeing this piece of... something.
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210west3 April 2005
"The Bone Collector" is so relentlessly stupid that I felt like screaming. You're expected to believe that Denzel Washington, as a quadriplegic former cop, is the sort of genius that puts Sherlock and Mycroft Holmes to shame; he's read (and apparently memorized) "thousands" of books, has written twelve, has a vaster-than-encyclopedic knowledge of New York City history, whips opponents at computer chess, and is so superhumanly adept at solving crimes that the NYPD lets him direct an entire serial-killer case from his bedside. Except for jealous captain Michael Rooker (cast because of his own Henry the Serial Killer connections), the guy appears to have the entire police bureaucracy under his command! You're also supposed to believe that doe-eyed, puffy-lipped Angelina Jolie -- whose New York accent fades early in the film -- is a respected street cop with a preternatural crime-fighting talent to rival Washington's own, and that Luis Guzman -- admittedly, always a delight, even in this nonsensical role -- is a brilliant forensic chemist. It's the sort of movie where, when Washington asks for the locations of local asbestos-removal sites, within 30 seconds someone comes up with a map on the computer, complete with two or three red dots that blink on and off and actually go beep-beep-beep! The murders themselves are gruesome, needlessly sadistic, and quite ridiculous in their intricacy and supposed motive. And get this: The killer -- whose identity is so obvious even I could spot it -- wears a full-head black mask despite dealing with victims who are about to die. That's the sort of thing done strictly in silly whodunits.
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