Friday, January 25, 2008


I’m not a fan of torture porn which usually make as much sense to me as Nicole Richie‘s celebrity. These types of films throw logic and common sense out the window in favor of sadism, torture, violence and gore. A “good” one will make you uncomfortable and raise issues such as morality and social norms. A bad one will bore you to no end, cause you to wonder if it was written by mentally retarded insane people with low IQ’s, and make you feel sorry for everyone involved. Untraceable is the latter.

Jennifer Marsh (Diane Lane) is the head of an FBI task force focused on cyber crime. When a serial killer (Joseph Cross) creates a website that allows users to kill his victims based on page hits, Jenny and her gang go to work to catch him.

This film is riddled with so many issues it’s hard to decide where to begin. I don’t know if they used the same technological consultant as Firewall (read that review) but considering it’s back-assward logic and lack of technical understanding it seems likely.

Our killer, with no real training, is the world’s most unstoppable computer hacker who creates Internet sites which can’t be traced or shut down, designs elaborate traps and torture devices that are activated and affected by users around the country (but doesn’t allow foreign access), and hacks into cell phones, the FBI, and OnStar. And he can do this because?

This movie actually makes Firewall look plausible.

Those familiar with the genre of torture porn will get what you expect. Victims are trapped in overly-elaborate traps and we get to watch them die painful deaths. Joy. Sadly though it’s the audience who gets tortured. The story makes no sense, nor does the investigation which makes Nostradamus-like leaps in logic and plot to try and corral this wildly implausible tale. And even if you can ignore all the bad dialogue, script problems, and lame torture scenes, the film still fails to entertain in even the smallest possible way.

Lane gives a nice performance, as do Colin Hanks and Billy Burke as part of her team, but that’s far from enough to save this catastrophe from itself. You will groan, you will laugh (at the constant stupidity), and you will feel real pain (at having to watch), but you won’t be entertained, frightened, or amused. And if I haven’t steered you away from this witless wonder, and you are still curious, just wait six to eight months and pull it out of the bargain DVD bin (where it truly belongs).

No comments: