Movie Details

PERSONAL EFFECTS

Walter (Ashton Kutcher), a wrestler, competes for a spot on the national team when he learns of his sister`s brutal death. He comes home to help his mother; he works out, takes a dead-end job, and goes to the trial of the accused murderer. He becomes friends with Linda (Michelle Pfeiffer) where her husband is murdered and is left alone to raise a teen son, Clay (Spencer Hudson), who`s deaf. Walter and Linda spend so much time together that they inevitably become intimate.

Language: English
Subtitle: NA
Classification: NC16
Release Date: 30 Jul 2009
Genre: Drama / Romance
Running Time: 1 Hour 51 Minutes
Distributor: SHAW ORGANIZATION
Cast: Ashton Kutcher, Michelle Pfeiffer, Spencer Hudson, Kathy Bates
Director: David Hollander
Format: NA

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Review
Writer: Syahida Kamarudin

Writer Ratings:
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Watch this if you liked: “Butterfly Effect”, “A Time To Kill”

Bitterness, regret, retribution and conviction - with such strong cinematic themes, it's more likely that you either hate this drama of love it, but not in between.

Acting-wise, Ashton Kutcher has given a competent performance as the quiet, torn Walter, a wrestler on the verge of breaking into the national team before he learns of his sister's brutal death. There is, however, some vagueness in Walter's personality, and you can't seem to determine whether it's a hit and miss from Kutcher, or from the story. However, Michelle Pfeiffer as Linda looks stunning in every scene that sometimes everybody else can't help but be overshadowed by her.

Plot-wise, it's a mixture between straight-up novelty and superficiality. There are times when you can really feel it in your heart and then there are scenes that are quite pretentious and instead of complementing the story, feel like a gist of the information for the audience. The part where Linda's son threw a rock at the dilapidated house is a straightforward tell-all, and was detached from the whole subtle presentation.

Though looking into the effects of personal loss in people's lives, it also slowly observes how outsiders perceive things - the lack of sensitivity, the simple understanding how things work when they aren't as easy as they look, and how sympathy is sometimes just a protocol (like how the psychiatrist makes it his habit to use the phrase "good stuff" in every single sentence). The film wishes to present you an invisible blanket, giving you warmth by saying that whether or not your misery has its conviction, there is always someone who would feel your pain and be there for you.

But in the end, it makes you question, for such a warm movie, with an ending that may be unpleasantly satisfying, why does it have to be shot in such a cold location and under such dark nuances?


Cinema Online, 12 July 2009
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Classification
Effective 15 July 2011
G - Suitable for all ages
PG - Suitable for all ages, but parents should provide guidance to their young
PG13 - Suitable for persons aged 13 and above, but parental guidance is advised for children below 13
NC16 - Suitable for persons aged 16 years and above
M18 - Suitable for persons aged 18 years and above
R21 - Restricted to persons aged 21 and above only
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