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Don’t Say A Word

August 25, 2010

Don’t Say a Word (2001)
Director: Gary Fleder
Actors: Michael Douglas, Brittany Murphy, Sean Bean

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Synopsis: A traumatised young woman (Brittany Murphy) holds the key to a plot that has seen the family of an eminent psychologist (Michael Douglas) kidnapped.

Review: This is a ridiculously hyperbolic and sensationalist thriller which takes huge liberties with narrative logic and its themes of Freudian angst, voyeurism and avarice. All that said – it’s still a damn good yarn, particularly in its first half, before slipping into a frenetic mess by the climax. For sheer conviction though, you have to begrudgingly admire the film. Where else would you encounter a story with such an brazen mesh of plot conceits; from the daughter held kidnap in a room above her own house, to the mother who just happens to be immobilised by a broken leg so is unable to escape the surveillance of the kidnappers, to the father who manages to make a schizophrenic patient break through a decade’s worth of psychological trauma to reveal the location of the all-important jewel. It’s all preposterous stuff but entertaining for a brainless, popcorn night in. (April 2006)

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