Sunday, September 09, 2007

Mr Brooks

2007, US, directed by Bruce A. Evans

Rating: **.5

As with many a contemporary serial killer movie, Mr Brooks imputes extraordinary, near superhuman, detection-avoidance abilities to its protagonist, as if, in addition to his twisted psychosis, he's also armed with a graduate degree in forensics to ensure his continued liberty. Perhaps the film, in choosing such a well-heeled killer (a kind of lethal Raffles) is engaging in unexpected social criticism, implying that access to great wealth can cover even the most sadistic of crimes (the extent of his holdings leads to an especially silly denouement involving a seedy photographer who believes he can one up Brooks).

Costner's star has fallen so far that it's easy to forget that he's still more than capable of carrying a film, his easygoing charm lending this effort far more credibility than it ultimately deserves, given its muddled plot and sometimes overwrought style. The film is most creepily successful, in the end, when it evokes the complicity between the two sides of Brooks's personality: the evil component is embodied by William Hurt, who has several enjoyably chewy scenes with Costner (there's a real frisson in the moments when the two parts of Brooks's broken psyche share a laugh over their plans).

1 comment:

patrick said...

i had a feeling Costner would make some kind of a comeback; plus it's interesting how Dane Cook went from stand up comedian to starring in a ton of major movies


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