Saturday, July 23, 2011

REVIEW: Taking Lives (2004)

Director: DJ Caruso
Starring: Angelina Jolie, Ethan Hawke

This was really dull and contrived. Angelina Jolie was supposed to be a secret agent in this? Could have fooled me. She acts about as secret agent-ish as a love-sodden high school girl most of the time in this movie. I couldn't believe that performance for two seconds. Ethan Hawke does a good job, but the writing is just all around shoddy, and provides little in the ways of interesting moments. The story moves sluggishly through various cliches and hoops of the detective-serial killer movie genre, and while some parts are interesting, I was never really sold on this. Gena Rowlands was pretty interesting as the mother of the killer the cops are chasing, but she's really not given her due in terms of captivating scenes, and so mostly it's just kind of a waste. There are some interesting plot points here and there, like a few of the chase scenes and some of the deceptive thrills, and there is at least an attempt at atmosphere made, but the writing is just poor, with very little interesting dialogue and very few scenes that really make you sit up and pay attention. This isn't necessarily awful, but it does not really engage you at all, and there are honestly just so many other, better movies you could be watching, so why waste your time with this anyway?