WARNING!! MAJOR SPOILERS!!
I don't know what the movie was supposed about. I liked the first three-fourths of it, but I cannot recommend it. I think it is full of logical inconsistencies, especially involving the characters.
Take the Kevin Bacon character: At one point, he tells his partner Laurence Fishburne that he will put the cuffs on his friend faster than Fishburne will if his friend (Tim Robbins) is guilty. This establishes him as a guy who puts duty above friendship. So why does he not arrest Sean Penn at the end of the movie when he knows Penn killed Robbins? Either he does his duty or he doesn't.
Take Fishburne's character: What happens to him at the end of the movie? Where is he? He would be the first to investigate the missing Robbins character, whom we know is killed by Penn. Somebody would be investigating his disappearance. Is it just an unsolved murder or disappearance?
Penn's character: He gets established as a loving, caring father who went straight after serving time because he loved his daughter. We see him say to his daughter's picture something like `I know I contributed to your death but I don't know how.' He is by himself, so that should be an indication of a caring, thoughtful guy, which, to me, he turns out not to be by the end of the movie. He is cold and ruthless. In movies, when we are shown characters doing something alone, it is an indication of what they truly are. That is like a contract the movie makes with us. He also knows that Robbins was abused as a kid. Yet he kills Robbins based only on circumstantial evidence. Robbins's wife thinks that he killed Penn's daughter. But Penn has got to be smart enough to want more evidence. Then he kills Robbins in front of 3 guys who will be surely grilled and leaned on by the cops because it is well known they associate with him. A bartender also saw them all together. And Penn would have to know he was a prime suspect. Wouldn't a guy like Penn be shrewder? Wouldn't he late till later, and have it done when he has an alibi?
Robbins's wife, Marcia Gay Harden: She seems to be a pathetic character by the end of the movie. At first she seems caring, consoling Penn's wife after the murder. But she suspects her husband murdered Penn's daughter and tells Penn and not the police. Who is that dumb? Did she not want her husband to get a fair trial?
Laura Linney's character: She is Penn's wife. We don't see her or get much sense of her until the end of the movie. Then, as others have said, she turns out to be Lady Macbeth. She tells her husband Penn that it is good that you do what you have to for your family. Why could that not simply mean turning Robbins over to the police? She then tells this cold-blooded mobster of a husband that he could run Boston!! Then they roll over on the bed and have sex?!?! Only cold, ruthless people do that. Why should I care about them?
Coincidences: Robbins just happens to kill a guy molesting a child the same night Penn's daughter is accidentally killed? And Robbins just happened to be in the last bar that Penn's daughter was in? And Penn kills Robbins just before Kevin Bacon's character, a cop, tells Penn he has the real killers? These seem like very cheap plot devices. Too improbable to be believed. How about Penn and Bacon? They end up being very awful guys, yet they were not the one abducted or molested. Sure it happened to their friend. But it is too much to believe they would be so affected.
The characters for most of the movie seemed sympathetic. But at the end, none of them, except possibly for Robbins's character that got into a car as a child with a child molester who pretended to be a cop (Penn and Bacon were there, too but did not get in) are sympathetic at the end of the movie. Penn gets back together with his estranged wife and seems to be happy with his life, so why bother investigating the murder of his friend Robbins even though he knows Penn killed him? YUK. At a parade, he makes his hand look like a gun and gives a sort of fake POW! pointed at Penn, like you're the man buddy. Or this is as much as I will do to you. And we see Penn surrounded by two or three of his thug henchman. Penn seems to have no remorse for killing Robbins. Linney gives Harden a sort of so what look, I don't care what happened to you. Harden walks around looking very sad and pathetic. Penn and Bacon don't seem to care how sad Robbins's son must be. We can see how sad he is a float with other little leaguers. There seems to be no reason why we should care about the characters played by Bacon, Harden, Penn or Linney. They are all despicable and unlikable people.
And it is not okay somehow that Robbins is dead because he killed a child molester, either. If I were on a jury trying Robbins for that murder, it would be hard to give him the death penalty. The movie seems to be saying that was some sort of justice that he got killed. Yet his murder of the molester was not premeditated like Penn's murder of him was. Or the conscious decision of Bacon to be okay with Penn killing Robbins. And the way Penn killed Robbins is brutal, painful and demeaning. Penn treats him in a very mean spirited way. The movie seems to be saying this is okay. Again, YUK.
Action / Crime / Drama / Mystery / Thriller
Action / Crime / Drama / Mystery / Thriller
In the summer of 1975 in a neighborhood in Boston, 3 kids, Dave Boyle and two of his friends, Jimmy and Sean, are playing on the sidewalk when Dave gets abducted by two men and endures several days of sexual abuse. Eventually, Dave escapes traumatized throughout adulthood. Jimmy is an ex-con and a father of three, whose daughter Katie, is found dead and Dave becomes the number one suspect. Sean is a homicide detective, investigating Katie's murder, ends up finding himself faced with past and present demons as more is uncovered about Katie's murder. Learning Katie had a boyfriend, ballistics later turn up a gun belonging to the father, which then puts her boyfriend as the suspect. Will Sean find out who killed Katie? Will Jimmy make it through the investigation? And will Dave ever find out what really happened when he was abducted?
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September 29, 2011 at 03:08 AM