Dave White
Civic Duty Review

Dave's Rating:


… still fun.

Who's in It: Peter Krause, Kari Matchett, Ian Tracey, Richard Schiff, Khaled Abol Naga

The Basics: An increasingly paranoid unemployed man (Krause) goes all Rear Window on his Middle-Eastern neighbor and becomes increasingly convinced that the guy's a terrorist. Along the way he becomes so emasculated and, in turn, so obnoxious that even the FBI gets sick of him.

What's the Deal? Even though I think this should have been made for FX instead of theaters, it's still fun. Nothing happens that hasn't happened in just about every other paranoia-thriller ever made, but I like those Falling Down-ish movies where everyday corporate jerks find the ground beneath their feet giving way. Those guys run the world anyway. Let 'em suffer a little bit for my entertainment.

What's Cool: Well, it's really good at exploiting current American terrorism fears. And = Schiff, as the cranky FBI guy, is pretty great. And then there's a funny and needlessly cruel last-minute twist that made me glad I had a DVD copy instead of watching it in a theater with other critics, because it made me laugh out loud, and I hate being the boorish one in that setting. And finally, as if it couldn't get better, there's another "see, he wasn't that crazy" bit in the last few seconds.

Yell-O-Meter: That's my new machine that measures shouting when lower-decibel intensity would suffice. And this movie's got tons of yelling. For comparison's sake, early John Waters movies where everyone does nothing but scream their dialogue are a 10. This one's about a 7.


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