Customer Review

21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars if only they could've come up with a more CREATIVE ending, December 15, 2008
This review is from: Lakeview Terrace (DVD)
There's an inherent problem with making a movie of this kind: unless you're a creative genius of your time, these sorts of movies have the potential to turn real generic, REAL fast.

Reminiscent of Denzel Washington from Training Day, we see Samuel L. Jackson play an overly aggressive cop with an agenda, with the movie focusing on the problems he's causing for his new neighbors. A completely realistic situation that can take place anywhere. Problem is, because a movie like this is completely character driven, after you have the nice slow build up to the climax, once the tension snaps, you're relegated to basically a generically default final act of the movie where "the bad guy finally comes out of the proverbial shadows and literally chases the hero." (i.e. Disturbia, The Glass House). It's a shame too because the buildup on this was very good. Samuel L. Jackson was really scary here, he played that bullying, obsessive character perfect. The only acting problems I saw were 2-3 moments from Kerry Washington where her sad face was done poorly, with overly done lip quivers and facial movements (similar to Kirsten Dunst's crying scenes from the Spider-Man movies, except done in a BAD way).

With a movie like this, you pretty much have these possible outcomes:

1) the generic, semi-predictable ending (like we got here).
2) tragic ending with hero dying at the end.
3) an unpredictable twist coming out of left field (this has the potential to be very good or very bad).
4) a Great ending.

Unfortunately we usually get number one, since they wanna give the satisfying, safe, effective, tried and true, Hollywood ending. Most people are content with those types of cop out endings. I'm not.
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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 18, 2008 6:57:25 AM PST
Don Mega says:


You've been warned. Do you think it would've been better if both Abel & Chris died? I liked this ending personally. If I were to change it, Chris would've died in the final standoff and Lisa would've had a miscarriage which would empower her to blow Abel's brains out CGI style. I hated Abel.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 23, 2008 6:59:16 AM PST
S. Greene says:
Ok *spoiler alert!!!!!!!!!* I didn't want Abel to die. I wanted them to be able to collect enough evidence on him so he can be dealt with by the IAB. I kept feeling like no one was on their side and I was waiting for them to get redemption, you know? But I hated Abel too.

Posted on Dec 28, 2008 11:02:35 AM PST
I think the ending would've been better if left completely open-ended and ambiguous, like many foreign films opt to do (Cache, Time Out, etc.).
Historically, however, American audiences balk at endings of this sort - they demand a clear-cut and crystal-clear resolution. So with an audience like that we're pretty much limited to the options you listed in your review. Sad, isn't it?

Posted on Dec 28, 2008 7:08:14 PM PST
camden0022 says:
Samuel L Jackson really creeped me out by his chilling performance in the movie. I watched it at my local $1.50 cinemas.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009 3:08:13 PM PST
Benstarbuck says:
excellent reveiw . i just saw the picture from netflix . you nailed it . a lot going for it but it will soon fade from my memory owing to the lax writing of the last 20 minutes or so . the young husband was brilliant in HARD CANDY . check that out if you have not already (a much better vehicle for the young woman from JUNO (hard candy) as well . in my opinion . keep up the good writing .

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 27, 2009 9:47:30 PM PST
Thanks B. Lafave, I LOVE Hard Candy, great acting from that guy (too lazy to look up his name), and Ellen Page, although she played almost the same character in Juno as well, but much more convincing and likeable in Hard Candy.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 19, 2009 8:38:16 PM PDT
That was Patrick Wilson who was also in "Angels in America" and "Phantom of the Opera" as well as "Hard Candy"---a very good actor.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 24, 2009 4:00:37 PM PDT
A. Ellefson says:
Don't forget his movie-stealing performance as william barrett travis in 2004's underrated THE ALAMO. Not many actyors could upstage billy bob thornton, but i really think he did.
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3.7 out of 5 stars (128 customer reviews)
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