Saturday, December 13, 2008

Derailed

I'll have to start a list of things I'm Not Supposed To Like But Do Anyway.

The movie (and novel) Derailed would be near the top. Now I'm willing to admit that there are certain plot points that seem a mite far-fetched but overall this story of two married people who meet each other on a commuter train and embark on a few adulterous hours of fun in a dusty downtown hotel works very well for me. Not so well, alas, for them. Just as they are getting all snuggly a thug breaks in on them and beats both of them savagely. He also photographs them. Soon after the the blackmail calls begin.

My favorite kind of suspense fiction involves average people turned desperate by events. Which explains my fondness for Hitchcock and several of his imitators.

Derailed isn't a great movie but for me it's got three great plots twists and several sturdy if not quite memorable performances, not least by the star Jennifer Anniston who'd previously never done much for me. Here she's playing a woman of intelligece and sensitivy. She's also a lot sexier than in her Friends-type roles.

The reviews I've seen have been savage and I'm not sure why. No, it's not art; it's not even commercial film making. But it's a cunning, suspenseful movie that keeps dopes like me content for the full length of its running time. So what the hell more can you ask for?

2 comments:

Martin Edwards said...

I agree, Ed. It's no masterpiece, but entertaining and certainly better, in my opinion, than the critics tended to say.

Dave Zeltserman said...

As clunky as the movie was, I remember thinking that it was better than I expected, and Jennifer Anniston was pretty good in it.