Friday, August 21, 2020


While far less clever than Falling Down, the new thriller from director Derrick Borte and screenwriter Carl Ellsworth plays on some of the same themes with a protagonist completely out of control. The difference here is that "The Man" (Russell Crowe), as he's credited, is never internally explored. The perspective of the film is shown through the eyes of his victims as he targets friends and family of a woman (Caren Pistorius) for the slight of daring to honk at him in traffic and refusing to apologize.

Prior to introducing Rachel (Pistorius) and her family, the film opens with The Man's brutal attack on another home. Obviously, he has anger management issues. After targeting Rachel, he gets an inordinate amount of information from her cell phone in short period of time, helped out by the single mother not locking her phone and people making calendar appointments on spur-of-the-moment get togethers. Unhinged isn't the kind of movie you'll want to start questioning or dissecting how likely something may have occurred (like the chance second meeting at the gas station) as it relies completely on the rage of Crowe's character and the pressure it can apply.

Given the need to continue ramp up the stakes to fuel the tension, the film does get ridiculous at times. The police presence in the film, always three steps behind, proves to be almost comedic by the end of the film. The choice to make Crowe's character a rage-fueled hate monster apart from any human motivations pushes the film closer to a monster movie than a pure thriller. I don't know if this is the movie that is going to pull people back into theaters, and despite the tone working for much of the film I can't bring myself to quite recommend it, but for those looking for a late summer mindless thriller it should provide what you expect.

  • Title: Unhinged
  • IMDb: link

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