"So Let it Be Written... So Let it Be Done"

The life and times of a real, down to earth, nice guy. A relocated New Englander formerly living somewhere north of Boston, but now soaking up the bright sun of southwestern central Florida (aka The Gulf Coast). Welcome to my blog world. Please leave it as clean as it was before you came. Thanks for visiting, BTW please leave a relevant comment so I know you were here. No blog spam, please. (c) MMV-MMXV Court Jester Productions & Bamford Communications

Saturday, January 09, 2010

SNMR 7.18: "Don't Say A Word"


Dr. Nathan Conrad (Douglas) is a brilliant psychologist who is asked by a colleague (Platt) to take a case pro-bono. That case is Elisabeth Burrows (Murphy), a young girl stuck in a psycho hospital since witnessing the murder of her father ten years prior by the bad guys. Conrad's daughter is kidnapped by the baddies, who stole a little red diamond/ruby ten years earlier and was stolen from them by Elisabeth's father, which now they want back. In order to retrieve the jewel they need a seven digit number which only Elisabeth knows and knows what it is for and refuses to tell.

The main reason I chose this movie to review now is directly related to the death of 32 year old actress Brittany Murphy a little less than a month ago.

I remember renting this movie shortly after it came out on VHS, probably on the strength of Michael Douglas being on my top ten list of favorite actors. I bought it on DVD a few years ago when I saw it in the irresistible $5 bin at the store.
This is not one of Douglas' career best performances but he's a good enough actor that he can still be believable. Famke Janssen and Jennifer Esposito are good in their roles as the immobile wife and brave polive homicide detective trying to solve a seemingly unrelated murder case. Sean Bean has made a career out of playing the misunderstood bad guy and does it quite well. Of course, this movie was another breakout role for Brittany Murphy, who is very convincing as the psych patient.

Director Gary Fleder seems to be a competent director, having helmed films such as Kiss the Girls before and Runaway Jury after making this movie, both of which I liked.

The DVD version I watched had a plethora of short but well-made extras, including cast and director interviews and a neat storyboard vs. live action sequence of two scenes.

I've not read the book but apparently it and the movie have major differences, or so I read somewhere, which is not unusual in book to film adaptations. It is a decent enough movie, despite the many plot holes ably pointed out by a viewer who commented on IMDb in 2007. The run time is a tidy 113 minutes; not too short and not too long. It is definitely worth borrowing from the library if you haven't seen it in a while.

*** out of *****

Don't Say A Word (2001, R, 113 minutes), starring Michael Douglas, Brittany Murphy, Sean Bean, Famke Janssen, Jennifer Esposito, Oliver Platt and Skye McCole Bartusiak. Based on the novel by Andrew Klavan. Screenplay by Anthony Peckham and Patrick Smith Kelly. Directed by Gary Fleder.



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