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Red Eye (W/S) (Bilingual)
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Veteran horror director Wes Craven lends his proven talent to the non-horror thriller \"Red-Eye\", turning it into an above-average potboiler that makes the most of its 85 tension-packed minutes. That's a perfect running time for a movie like this, in which a resourceful heroine Lisa (Rachel McAdams, the breakout star of 2005) is trapped on a red-eye flight with creepy villain Jackson Rippner (Cillian Murphy, even more menacing than he was as the Scarecrow in \"Batman Begins\") who's playing middle-man in the plot to assassinate a Homeland Security official. He's got her father pinned down by a would-be killer, using that advantage to coerce Lisa into phoning the luxury resort where she works and arranging to move the target into a pre-set position. It's a situation from which there is seemingly no escape, but of course Craven and screenwriter Carl Ellsworth find a way to milk the suspenseful dilemma for all it's worth, even managing to wedge in a few intriguing character details to enhance the fast-moving plot. It's still a B-movie, but it's tightly constructed and well-executed by Craven, whose previous films made him a perfect choice to maximize all that \"Red-Eye\" has to offer. \"--Jeff Shannon\"
Veteran horror director Wes Craven lends his proven talent to the non-horror thriller Red-Eye, turning it into an above-average potboiler that makes the most of its 85 tension-packed minutes. That's a perfect running time for a movie like this, in which a resourceful heroine Lisa (Rachel McAdams, the breakout star of 2005) is trapped on a red-eye flight with creepy villain Jackson Rippner (Cillian Murphy, even more menacing than he was as the Scarecrow in Batman Begins) who's playing middle-man in the plot to assassinate a Homeland Security official. He's got her father pinned down by a would-be killer, using that advantage to coerce Lisa into phoning the luxury resort where she works and arranging to move the target into a pre-set position. It's a situation from which there is seemingly no escape, but of course Craven and screenwriter Carl Ellsworth find a way to milk the suspenseful dilemma for all it's worth, even managing to wedge in a few intriguing character details to enhance the fast-moving plot. It's still a B-movie, but it's tightly constructed and well-executed by Craven, whose previous films made him a perfect choice to maximize all that Red-Eye has to offer. --Jeff Shannon
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Top Customer Reviews
McAdams plays Lisa, a hotel manager who, on an late night-early morning flight, finds herself seated beside the worst person she could possibly imagine Jackson Rippner(Cillian Murphy). The rest of the movie is Jack trying to force Lisa into aiding him with an assasination.
Lisa is a strong woman who although frightened gives him one hell of a fight. She is tough, loving, resourceful, and a heck of a snazzy dresser. I felt she was a really believable character and was played out brilliantly by fellow Canadian, McAdams.
As the viewer you are drawn to Lisa's side immediately, cheering for her, but you cannot help cheering for the villian either.
Cillian Murphy plays Jackson Rippner with such grace and style that you just smirk at whatever he says. Murphy's strikingly crystal blue eyes and handsome appearance make the villian so sexy you almost forget that he's evil.
Murphy's and McAdams on screen chemistry adds to many levels of Red Eye. They play off each other so well and with such ease, you can tell they are enjoying themselves.
There are also a many number of minor characters on the plane that add to the humour and terror of the film.
I highly recommend this film to anybody. It's not perticularly scary, but it does give you one heck of an adrenaline rush.
to have a very bad day.what should be a routine flight becomes anything
but.i'll leave the plot at that,but trust me when i say this a
riveting,compelling,nail biting thriller.for a movie that essentially
take place in an airplane as the setting,this movie works very well.the
same sort of tactic was employed in the movie "Phone Booth",where--you
guessed it,most of the movie takes place in or near a phone booth.that
movie didn't work for me."Red Eye" does,though.there are a few
surprising things about this movie.one is it's running time of less
than 90 minutes.another is it's relatively mild PG-13 rating.and
then,you have Wes Craven as the director.this movie is certainly far
removed from most of the blood soaked gore-fests that are his usual
forte.with all those elements,it was surprising to me that this film
works so well.i think that a lot of the credit should go to both
McAdams and her co-star Cillian Murphy.McAdams plays the terrified,yet
strong woman very credibly and Murphy is brilliant in his role in the
piece.but Craven deserves some credit for his deft direction.he makes
it seem as if this type of film is a natural fit for him..it just goes
to show you that with a good script,screenplay(by Carl Ellsworth)and
direction, as well as the right actors,you don't need blood and guts to
make a successful thriller."Red Eye' gets a 4.5/5 from me
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Which brings us to Red Eye, which is not a horror movie per se, although it contains horrific and timely elements (the fear of terrorism, with its randomness, informs and heightens the claustrophobia). Red Eye is a taut Hitchcockian thriller in which a young professional woman played by Rachel McAdams (The Wedding Crashers) takes a red eye flight back to her home in Miami after attending her grandmother's funeral. It develops that her seatmate (the Irish actor Cillian Murphy, playing an American hit man with hypnotic, creepy brio)is finessing an assassination plot on a high-ranking government official who's staying at the hotel McAdams manages. The entire second act of the film takes place in the plane, a daring contrivance that Craven brings off with great form. What makes this movie Hitchcockian is, of course, the close-quarter threat (Lifeboat, Rope, Rear Window) and the bomb in plain sight/ticking clock element, as McAdams races against time to prevent the assassination and foil Murphy's designs.
But what really stands out about the movie, and I think the reason I bought it after renting it a couple of years ago and forgetting much of the plot, is the incredibly strong female lead. McAdams is sexy, smart, self-reliant and ingenious, and much of the fun of the film is watching Murphy's cocksure assassin lose control of the reins, as McAdams not only fails to be intimidated by him but actually shows herself to be the craftier--because more imaginative, and flexible--of the two.
I recommend this movie unreservedly (pun intended).
*Good video quality. Presented in Widescreen, enhanced for 16:9 TVs.
*Contains a few special features; a commentary, a couple of featurettes, and outtakes/bloopers.
*A few well-placed special effects and action scenes.
*Very thrilling and interesting story. It's short and simple, but brilliant and well-made.
*Characters are good. They're not terribly well-developed, but for the first half-hour, the protagonist and antagonist share some interesting and believable interactions. Their conflict later on is more intense that way, too. Acting is great; the bad guy was quite menacing and memorable.
*Pretty good dialogue.
*Just a little bit of violence towards the end; it's a bit gnarly, but nothing too intense (although this can be bad if you're looking for blood and guts).
*My copy came with a cool lenticular slipcover.
The Bad Things
*Slow to start.
*One or two of the characters do act a little dumb (makes you want to shout at them, "Don't do that!" or "Run!!" or something. Could also be considered suspenseful, though).
It's a very classy, simple idea that warrants an intruiging story; what would happen if you're on a plane and forced to help an assasin carry out his mission? The acting makes the story believable, immersive, and fascinating. The final confrontation is gripping. Altogether, despite being short and simple, it's a surprisingly thrilling film.
"Red Eye" directed by Wes Craven ("Cursed", the "Scream" films, "Nightmare Before Elm Street") is a very good example of the thriller genre.
I think the first trailer released for this film is a brilliant piece of marketing. The trailer paints the film as a nice, romantic drama featuring a chance meeting between Lisa and Jackson. They meet in the airport, they have a snack together, then, lo and behold, they find they are sitting next to each other. The flight will be a pleasant affair. Just as the trailer has convinced you of this, a title card appears announcing "A Film by Wes Craven", in red lettering, and the music becomes ominous. The trailer is so brilliant, because it so completely convinced me that the film would be a romantic drama before switching gears, that my hopes were raised for this film.
"Red Eye" has a lot going for it. Not the least of its attributes is that the film is very brisk and clocks in at about 85 minutes long. This provides Craven with little room for lingering on anything and he keeps things moving. The subplot, which begins before we even meet Lisa, is introduced with a series of brief shots depicting the machinations of a group who need Lisa's help. These shots are quick, informative and interesting. Then the main story kicks in and we leave this group for a while.
When we meet Lisa, you might think the film would seem to slow down a little, but upon reflection, I realized that every scene has at least two purposes in the plot. The initial encounter between Lisa and Jackson, in line at the ticket counter, would seem to serve only one purpose, to introduce the two characters to one another. Later in the film, one of the characters involved makes a brief reappearance. In fact, many of the minor characters are introduced and we learn a little bit about their characters. In some way or fashion, they will all have another moment or two to either help or complicate the journey of Lisa and Jackson.
Because all of these minor characters are given a `history', the film rises above the rest of the pack. Most films don't even bother with minor characters, using them simply as window dressing. In "Red Eye", they become a part of the story. An older flight attendant complains to her co-worker about a broken coffee pot and the company stealing her pension from her. A little girl is flying alone for the first time. An elderly woman strikes up a conversation with Lisa about the Dr. Phil book her father loaned her. A woman flirts insistently with Jackson asking for his help with her bag. All of this may seem like busy work, but Craven and the writers, Carl Ellsworth and Dan Foos tie it all back to the plot and make them a part of the story. Because of this level of detail, the film is, ultimately, stronger.
The relationship between Lisa and Jackson is intriguing and interesting to watch. Lisa isn't the normal helpless heroine. She reveals that she may be a little tougher than Jackson hoped and ultimately becomes a more interesting adversary to him. Jackson is also quietly menacing, quick to smile to someone on the plane who may have noticed them, to assuage their concerns, to make them invisible again. Speaking in low tones, he makes it clear that he will carry out his threats.
The movie becomes a bit more standard after the plane lands in Miami. Part of the reason the film works is that the two characters are in the middle of a sea of people in a confined airplane chamber. Once the plane lands, their world expands and there are many other influences upon each of their actions. The finale is pretty standard for thrillers and less than spectacular, dragging the rest of the film down. But thankfully, this section is also very briskly paced and over quickly.
"Red Eye" suffers from a lackluster final 10 minutes, but it is still far above average for a film in this genre. Definitely worth a bargain matinee.
There are a few original elements to the film, though. The 'badguy' is not a formula villian, and the heroine is a very able character, not the typical 'scream helplessly' type you see in most horror movies. This helps the film from becoming a total Hollywood thriller stereotype. In addition, Wes Craven does milk some nice suspense out of the fairly cookie-cutter script.
Basically, Red Eye is entertaining as long as you don't expect too much from it. If you just want a fun short (85 minutes) little movie, Red Eye is a good choice.
This is a movie about a victim who fights back. Like her attacker two years earlier, her assailant holds a knife to her throat only this time it's a metaphorical weapon that keeps her in check. And no matter what she does she will remain scarred for life. Or will she? Her previous attack occurred in a setting where presumably there were people around who should have been able to help her but didn't. Nor do they here.
First the bad.
The plot is thin and Craven is not Hitchcock.
The assassination plot is too complicated; the writers should have watched Scarface and learned how a nuisance and his family can be taken out with far less effort.
McAdams is terrorized and abused for 3 solid hours and the only person on the plane who seems to notice that anything is wrong is an 11-year-old child.
I usually enjoy Wes Craven's movies, but his film-making style has a tendency to patronize the viewer. In the pursuit of thrills, he seems to only ask "would the audience like it?" and not "would the audience buy it?" The lithe and delicate-looking McAdams possesses Rambo-like strength and fighting ability, impaling her adversary's body with blunt objects and firing a vase at him with the force of a meteorite. Are Bob and Marianne Taylor ---holes? Yes. Would any respectable employee tell them to "shove it"? No. I don't know why it was necessary for Cynthia to take the elevator all the way to the top floor to warn the Keefes; wouldn't a phone call from the Front Desk have saved time and been safer for Cynthia? Why does Keefe trust Reisert with his life and how does Reisert know what kind of a person he is?
Cliché elements and dialogue. At times the acting and screenplay appear mechanical and scripted. This does not happen with the two main characters, however.
Now the good.
The casting of the two leads and their acting. Both Murphy and McAdams are brilliant in their roles. Whatever problems the plot may suffer from on the ground don't really matter because this movie is about what goes on between two people in the air.
Can you kidnap someone on an airplane? Ten years ago some people might have thought it ridiculous to make a movie about a group of terrorists who hijack a couple of airplanes and fly them into high-rise buildings, but they wouldn't think it ridiculous today. In any case, this movie was not about kidnapping in the usual sense. It was about threat and coercion which can happen just about anywhere. Rippner didn't get on board with a box cutter, only a stolen wallet and for the purpose of persuading the heroin to make a phone call. He was holding her hostage psychologically; he told her if she told the flight attendant her father would die. So she was forced to spend the flight trying to deliver messages surreptitiously and it never worked. Truth is stranger than fiction and there are situations that make headlines around the world every day that you couldn't make up. "Man coerces woman in plane in murder plot; woman escapes"? I don't have a problem with it. Plausible or not, this is a very effective thriller. Not a second of screen-time is wasted and the suspense never lets up.
For her role as victim, McAdams completely sells it. And Murphy seems to understand well the mind of the sociopath. Anyone who has ever known one knows not only how they are able to rationalize their evil deeds but the strange way they seem to interpret situations and events, always through the lens of their own inflated ego and self-serving agenda. Jackson quotes Dr. Phil to Lisa as she regains consciousness, lectures her about honesty and the importance of getting the job done to keep customers happy. The senseless makes sense in his dark mind.
Unintended comedy in a movie is often a bad thing, but you've got to love it here. A flashy, high-profile terrorist winds up chasing a woman around her house with a lady's scarf wrapped around his neck and angrily pulling the heel of a woman's shoe out of his leg. McAdams' character mocks and emasculates him in the process which only serves to fuel his rage. Movies in which abused women fight back have been popular since the 80s. But not since Farah Fawcett shoved a can of bug spray into the face of a would-be rapist in Extremities have I found it so satisfying to see a scoundrel get what's coming to him.
One gets the feeling that Rippner's frustration and rage is as much about wanting Lisa and not being able to have her as it is about the possibility of his life going to s---. No wonder Cillian Murphy fans are checking the internet daily to find out of Red Eye 2 is in the works yet. There is even a petition for it somewhere on the internet. The villain isn't the only one dealing with inner conflict. In my opinion, men who abuse women are cowards. So what is it about Rippner that makes him so appealing? It can't just be his good looks. If any prequel or sequel is ever made, I will be the first one in line outside the theater the day it opens. But Jackson-and-Lisa fanfiction readers who envision them running off into the sunset together should realize that this villain is a VERY bad man and the script writers have big hurdles to get over if these two are ever to appear on screen together again. Want to know what Rippner does for a living? He already told you. Want to know how his parents died? He already told you that, too. And, remember, Jackson Rippner "never lies."