REVIEW: Red Eye (Wes Craven, 2005)

I felt like I had already seen most of Red Eye. The previews were enticing, presenting a seemingly original story through a chance romance, then flipping it upside down into a sinister predator versus innocent prey relationship. The film doesn't go much further than this, rendering the plot points stale. I would have much rather seen this without knowing of its storyline, though I suppose I cannot discredit the film itself for a revealing ad campaign.

I suppose it's nice to see Craven putting his hands to different kinds of thrillers, and I can give him props for not going the now cliche 'sleek' route with this, but his compositions are rarely all that good and he relies too heavily on tight shots. The few wide shots we see are begging for more exposure. Craven also uses very simple techniques to progress the storyline and entertain and lead the audience. He's frequently sprinkling the environment with caricature characters the way Spielberg might (but here they're used much to a much worse end). He even leaves Cillian Murphy's cabin light on in the plane, when everyone else's was turned off, to make him stand out with perhaps the most obvious subtlety possible.

The rest of the cast is unfortunately mediocre. I love me some Rachel McAdams, but this is the first time I've seen her fail to believably deliver stilted dialog (someone get this girl a good script, please!) Brian Cox does what he can as McHottie's father while looking more like James Lipton than ever.

I did not begin to enjoy the film on any level until the final third finally beefed the story up a bit but dropped the ball even further technically. Overall, Red Eye left me dying for Harrison Ford to show up and tell it to get off his plane.

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