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Detective Fiction (2003)

Not Rated | | Drama | 20 January 2003 (USA)
When a man turns to detective writing as an escape from his court-ordered sobriety, the line between reality and fiction blurs. Based on the director's award-winning play of the same name.


Patrick Coyle


Patrick Coyle

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1 win. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Mo Collins ... Jennifer Hannan
Patrick Coyle ... Jack Hannan
Sarah Agnew ... Leslie
Brent Doyle Brent Doyle ... Elliot
Peter Thoemke ... Uncle John
Matthew Morrison ... Young Jack
Jordan Hedlund Jordan Hedlund ... Philip
Tim Russell ... Max
Gene Larche Gene Larche ... Bartender
Ann Milligan Ann Milligan ... Cashier
James Craven James Craven ... Man on Street
Craig Schumacher Craig Schumacher ... Other Man on Street
Kim Berg Kim Berg ... Woman in Grocery Line
Kurt Schweickhardt Kurt Schweickhardt ... Homeless Guy on Street
Paul Smith Paul Smith ... Grizzled Guy in Alley


When a man turns to detective writing as an escape from his court-ordered sobriety, the line between reality and fiction blurs. Based on the director's award-winning play of the same name.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Not Rated






Release Date:

20 January 2003 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA


Box Office


$200,000 (estimated)
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Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


References Double Indemnity (1944) See more »

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User Reviews

Strong acting and direction keep this character study engaging.
15 June 2005 | by cashelbyron-1See all my reviews

Expectations are everything when watching a film and this well-acted character study suffers some from a title that makes fans of typical detective stories, and Pulp Fiction, expect something with more action. But give it a chance. Mo Collins, one of the great comic television actors, is capable of far more than big vapid eyes and respiratory tics in a Mad-TV sketch. And Patrick Coyle, the writer and director, shines equally as male lead, Jack, with a look somewhere between Robert Culp and William H. Macy and a distinctive voice perfectly paired to the noir style with its voice-over segments.

Over time the film's strong writing and acting overcome one's early disappointment that this isn't going to be a typical thriller, but a relationship story painted in noir tones. Once one lets go of expectations and follows the story Coyle has to tell, there is ample entertainment, empathy and fuel for thought to be derived from this tale of a couple's fight to overcome the loneliness togetherness has come to mean for them. It's well directed too, with clever shots and subtle juxtapositions that relieve tensions the dialogue creates and make the watching interesting, even though it's basically a filmed play.

Especially fun for Twin Cities residents are the many familiar streets and buildings, from the old Koscielski's gun shop, with its big smiley face and bullet entry sign, to the classic Parkway Theater and seedy parts of the warehouse district, which have been edited together to suggest a whole city block of adult entertainment (none of whose activities appear on screen).

People who enjoy good acting and films about relationships will appreciate Detective Fiction. It's a well wrought film, better than the average video store offering. Collins and Coyle are real talents and movie fans would benefit from more film work by both.

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