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Retired cop Eddie Burns gave 15 years and the use of his left arm to the Reno homicide squad. When his wayward sister, Kassie, goes missing Eddie Burns finds himself subjected to a fiendish and ingenious campaign of revenge by the mysterious Charlie Strom. In order to protect his sister, Eddie - disabled, betrayed and alone - journeys into the heart of his own darkness: where he discovers that the reason for his ordeal lies in his own past sins and those of his adversary Charlie Strom.Written by
Gary Oldman described this as 'the worst movie ever made'. He did this film because he had taken time off work and had just gone through a divorce. See more »
When Kassie draws a circle on the mirror with her lipstick the circle changes shape between shots. See more »
[quoting the opening and closing lines of John Donne's sonnet "Death Be Not Proud"]
Death be not proud, though some have called thee / Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;... One short sleep past, we wake eternally, / And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.
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Sin takes an average revenge story, adds in rape and pornographers, and ultimately turns into an average revenge story. At the very least, the plot thickens near the end of the movie when we realize that the bad guy (who is a really bad guy and the movie absolutely will leave no questions about that) turns out to have a reason for his actions throughout the movie beyond just being a really bad guy. It is odd, however, that a movie can take such talented actors as Ving Rhames and, especially, Gary Oldman and turn their performances into run-of-the-mill action clichés.
Rhames utters the phrase 'she's my sister' so many times in the movie that by the end the movie has turned the phrase into a cliché all by itself. You messin' with my family you messin' with me, and so forth. I think that most of the reason that so many people hated this movie was because it raises your expectations because of the people involved but did nothing new within its genre. It's a standard revenge movie with standard plot points and turns and even the standard plot thickening in the third act.
Where the movie does not wallow in clichés, however, is in some of the characterizations. No one is as good or bad as they initially seem to be in this movie. The evil was heaped onto Charlie Strom, Gary Oldman's character, so heavily in the first half of the movie that it's difficult for him to escape from underneath the mountain of badness that he is under even when we see the reasons for his actions, but the good guys in particular, are not as good as they seem. Eddie Burns (Ving Rhames) lost the use of his left arm in the line of duty, but also played a role in the death of an innocent man that could really amount to murder. Bella, played by Alicia Coppola, is someone that we want to root for but may hesitate because of the, ah, sinful nature of her occupation.
There is, however, a lot of forgiveness in the movie, and I respect that. At one point, Eddie discusses some of the finer points in life with Strom over cups of coffee, despite their mutual desires to kill one another. Later in the movie, Eddie is attempting to save Strom from a pool of quicksand in the middle of the Nevada desert. I didn't know there was quicksand in the middle of the Nevada desert, but no matter. The movie's not about where there is quicksand or how fast you can get from large freeways in the middle of Las Vegas to open desert without even any discernible roads, the movie's about you messin' with my family you messin' with me. And who better than Ving Rhames to return the messy favor?
Rhames could take these people out with an arm tied behind his back.
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