Writer: Nurliana Kamaruddin
Writer Ratings:Overall: Cast:
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Coming from Wes Craven, you really can't expect anything less than a teeth-clenching-grip-your-seat thriller, can you? "Red Eye" delivers true signature Craven style from the very beginning of the movie, holding you in a chokehold of suspense and doesn't let go until the movie finally ends. A truly exciting movie that's worth the trip to the cinema.
The movie opens with the fast-paced transfer of something in a white trunk, then cuts to a harried hotel receptionist who is trying to handle a pair of difficult customers. The pacing of the story then slows to almost a romance drama as you are introduced to a very capable hotel manager, Lisa Reisert (Rachel McAdams) who soon solves the receptionist's trouble over the phone as she herself dashes through traffic to reach the airport and catch her flight to Miami in time.
Upon arriving at the airport Lisa finds out that her flight was delayed and that's when she meets charming and handsome Jackson Rippner (Cillian Murphy). Not only is Jackson good-looking, he's also seemingly a perfect gentleman and the two of them hit it off immediately. By this time, you're going to start to wonder if this IS a romance comedy, but as the plane takes off, the pace of the film changes dramatically.
The word I would use to describe this movie would be 'intense' - from the very moment Jackson reveals his true objective to Lisa, all the way to the final showdown between the two of them. Craven shows exactly what a master can do with a simple plotline, working on an interesting dialogue between the two leads and nail-biting consequences of events.
Cillian Murphy is a winner as usual as the terrorist out for blood. I do fear that he's going to keep on taking these psycho roles (like he had in "Batman Begins" and "Disco Pigs") and not show a little more versatility in his acting. Still, you cannot argue that he does do the 'psycho' roles well. Those shocking blue eyes works like a charm in switching him from gorgeous stranger to alarming maniac with unnerving conviction.
Talking about stereotypes, Rachel McAdams is breaking her teenage movie mould with this one. She was excellent in "The Notebook" and in "Red Eye", she takes her career one step further as the brave and resourceful Lisa Reisert. She easily makes you feel for her situation, allowing her fear and uncertainty to channel through, while remaining stoically defiant to Rippner's demands.
Between them, the two leads held the movie together, delivering the needed fear and suspense due to the state of affairs. Interestingly, I thought Rachel McAdams and Cillian Murphy shared very good chemistry as well, vital in this movie that focuses almost solely on the two of them. Considering all that, I wouldn't mind seeing them in a romantic comedy together one day (kissing instead of stabbing one another, haha!
For a movie with a very simple premise and even simpler (in fact rather underdeveloped one at that) storyline, this movie ended up as a tense psychological thriller complete with the claustrophobic-ness of a plane flight. Goes to show why director Wes Craven is hailed a master in this genre.Cinema Online, 23 September 2008