Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Clive Owen, Jennifer Aniston, Vincent Cassel, Melissa George, Addison Timlin
Director: Mikael Håfström
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
With a nasty villain and a plot twist that will take many viewers by surprise, Derailed is the kind of potboiler that's enjoyable in spite of its flaws. It's basically two-thirds of a good movie, with a convincing set-up a... more »
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Much better than they say
2many2read | United States | 11/13/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"They are the critics, especially those writing reviews collected online. Part of this is that they want Jennifer Aniston to be cast, as usual, as the wholesome girl next door.
The critics saw all the surprises ahead of time. I really didn't and I enjoyed them. (If you figured out the twists in A Beautiful Mind, you can guess this, too.)
Another possible reason for the tepid reviews is that it is an upsetting movie with several horrific scenes of violence. No doubt about it, it simply isn't a likable movie; if you were to take your kids --dont!-- they'd have nightmares.
Financial advisor Lucinda Harris (Jennifer Aniston) and ad guy Charlie Schine (Clive Owen) have an illict affair after a chance meeting on a commuter train. But it doesn't go smoothly and soon they are victims of an extortion plot.
As usual, the advertising agency scenes are off the mark. What is a "commercial executive?" Even though we see Charlie at work what exactly does he do? (Even What Women Want -- a much better film -- went wrong here.) Even worse, there is no there there to the financial advisor scenes. So both characters' jobs are Hollywood hooey.
Both the main chracters are in a complete bind between family conflicts -- Charlie has a sick child -- high-pressure jobs, their shared secret, and their shared victimhood.
As in all the Hitchcock films, the victims can't go the police. (Remember how threatening the police officer is to Marion Crane -- Janet Leigh -- in Psycho?)
Surely this is no Hitchcock masterpiece, but it is an entertaining and twisty thriller.
The screenwriter Stuart Beattie also wrote the far better Collateral. Maybe the more you liked Collateral, the less you will like Derailed?
Even with two well-known stars, there is zero anticipatory buzz about this movie. We all know Jennifer Aniston from Friends on TV, but Mr. Owen has been in many excellent films: Sin City, Closer, The Bourne Identity, Gosford Park, Croupier.
Rappers RZA and Xzibit are well-cast supporting players. Vincent Cassel captures the essence of the chameleon-like villain. You want to throttle him throughout the picture.
Did the studio that released this picture have little faith in it? The marketing budget and the short marketing time frame -- a few weeks in advance, not months -- suggest that's true. Maybe their dismissive attitude was conveyed to the critics."
Intense Thriller in the Hitchcock Tradition
Antoinette Klein | Hoover, Alabama USA | 06/19/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is a little difficult to watch because of all the violence the viewer is exposed to---rape, torture, and mind numbing bloodshed---but in its own way, this is an entertaining thriller.
It begins as an adulterous love/lust story when Lucinda Harris (Jennifer Aniston) and Charles Schine (Clive Owen) meet on a Chicago commuter train. Charles is bored with life, saddled with a very sick daughter, and having a difficult time at work. He is thrilled that someone as beautiful as Lucinda could be interested in him and before long the two are headed to a hotel. Just as they are about to consummate their relationship, a thug (Vincent Cassel) bursts into the room, robs and beats Charles and rapes Lucinda repeatedly. Ashamed, shaken, and badly hurt, Charles is shocked when the villain not only calls him and demands blackmail money but also shows up at his home. Charles pays the blackmail but enough is not enough. The villain, sensing Charles' weakness and inability to fight back, increases his demands.
There are twists and turns that will keep the viewer on the edge of his seat. I won't, of course, reveal what happens, but the first twist is not the last and this story will not let you relax. It's terribly violent, unnerving from start to finish, but worth seeing. Clive Owen is sympathetic as the embattled victim and Jennifer Aniston proves once and for all she's not Rachel Green anymore.
Picture yourself on a train in a station
Amanda Richards | Georgetown, Guyana | 10/19/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Maybe this sort of situation was what the Beatles had in mind when they wrote "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds"
Charles Schine (Clive Owen) is a married man who works in advertising. His wife is a teacher, and their daughter requires very expensive medical care and lots of parental attention. The stresses of life are beginning to take a toll on them all, and our story begins when Charles misses his regular train, and finds himself without a ticket and with an empty wallet.
"Picture yourself on a train in a station,
With plasticine porters with looking glass ties,
Suddenly someone is there at the turnstile,
The girl with kaleidoscope eyes."
Aforementioned girl turns out to be named Lucinda (Jennifer Aniston), and when she offers to pay his fare, he feels obligated to return the favor. Something clicks between the two, and before you know it, they're showing off pictures of their kids and agreeing to meet again. A couple of meetings later it progresses to a surreptitious assignation (that's my two big words for this review) at a seedy hotel, and all seems to be smooth sailing.
"Newspaper taxis appear on the shore,
Waiting to take you away.
Climb in the back with your head in the clouds,
And you're gone"
Unfortunately, and just a bit too soon, they learn the hard way that seedy hotel door locks can't be trusted, and from here on in, Charles finds himself in deep you-know-what, as an intruder calculatedly takes him for everything he's got. Lucinda begs him not to involve the police, even though she got the worst of the attack, so Charles tries to tackle the problem himself, with a little help from a friend.
Other verses of the song hint at the predictable twist, so I won't go into those, but suffice to say, the improbable and implausible ending totally derails an otherwise entertaining movie.
I'd say this one is a definite rental, especially if you're a fan of Owen or Aniston. Rated: 3.5 stars
Amanda Richards, October 19, 2007
A possible reality
Michael Pettinato | U.S.A. | 05/08/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"After you watch this, you will believe that it has likely happened to people, Clive Owen, who is one of the better actors to come along in ahwile is an average guy who many of us could identify with, he is an advertising executive who has a pretty wife(Melissa George) & a sick child, but the passion in his marriage has gone by the wayside, he then has a chance encounter with Lucinda(Jennifer Aniston), who is very attractive, & they have a fling, only to be alarmed by an intruder(Vincent Cassel, who is downright nasty & intimidating) in their hotel room, he not only robs & beats Owen, but rapes Anniston, if that wasn't bad enough, he harasses Owen throughout the film, threatning to expose their secret if not paid off, Owen conveys the emotion of a man whose life has gone from bad to worse, forget "Fatal Attraction", this is every cheating man's worst nightmare!!, & Anniston is very good in a slightly different role, who has a secret all her own, A very good thriller that will not bore you, why this film didn't do better is beyond me, the message is simple, "dont' fool around"!!!!!"