Red Eye

Synopsis: Fear takes flight at 30,000 feet in this non-stop action thriller! An overnight flight to Miami quickly becomes a battle for survival when Lisa (Rachel McAdams) realizes her seatmate plans to use her as part of a chilling assassination plot. As the miles tick by, she’s in a race against time to warn the potential victims before it’s too late. Get ready for the non-stop, adrenaline-pumping thrill-ride that Peter Travers of Rolling Stone claims “will pin you to your seat.”
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Red Eye 8.0

Wow… talk about edge-of-your-seat thriller ride!

Sure, it had a few things that nagged at me a bit (can you get back up after being stabbed in the larynx? can a woman really run in heels, and if not why don’t they ever toss them in movies? how does a woman keep her make-up, however minimal, unsmudged in a totally chaotic. life-or-death situation?), including a few contrivances (cel phones conveniently running low, …etc) but the ride was so intense that I was totally able to ignore those details.

What really helped was that the main character, played by Rachel McAdams, had smarts and wasn’t your average thriller film victim: she tried to outwit her tormentor, didn’t shy away from crossing the line to undo him (but only with him!), …etc. Not everything that she did worked, but what she attempted to do was usually credible – even if I wouldn’t have made the same choices.

B-t-w, I’d like to give thanks to ‘Scream’ for starting the trend in these types of movies! I remember a time when female characters always tripped and got caught. Or they would just weep uncontrollably and be totally unable to do anything. Thank goodness this has changed! Now it’s one person’s will to survive versus another’s intention of doing harm. It’s about skill, smarts and a bit of luck – not about some BS gender stereotype.

All this to say that her character provided balance to the movie’s weak points. Because, while I was buying into what she did and wondering what she’d try next (and how he would react!) those other details got left in the dust. It simply moved too fast to bother holding on to those issues.

Speaking of which, Cillian Murphy (28 Days Later, Sunshine) is our lead here and his pasty creepiness reminded me of Ray Liotta somehow. Just sickly, unlikeable… too weird. They did right in picking him, however, even if he’s not physically imposing or partiularly charming; they needed someone who wasn’t as well known in North America and it worked.

All in all, I’m pleased with this movie. To think that I would have totally disregarded if it hadn’t dropped into my hands for free. Wes Craven did real good here. Real good. It’s definitely one of his best efforts.

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