The secret lies within.
Plot: It appears Uncle Fester has 10 different personalities and they duke it out at the Bates motel until only one is left standing. Thatís the whole fucking film. And the one left standing is a cute little quiet boy with a fondness for killing things.
Commentary: Interesting film until you figure out whatís going on. John Cusack does an admirable job in his role as one of Festerís personalities, but he really doesnít have a lot to work with. Utterly forgettable. Avoid.
More appropriate title: Uncle Festerís Revenge
SCORE: 3.5 Stars
Identity literally gave me goose bumps. Could there be higher praise for a thriller?
The thriller is a big genre. Identity best fits into the pop-psychology sub-category, but keeps you guessing by toying around with the crime and supernatural varieties.
Identity is set on an obligatory dark and stormy night at a motel where ten seemingly random strangers are targeted for murder. The "trick" behind Identity is that the motel strangers are not random at all. They have been selected on purpose for elimination. And, if this seems impossible, I assure you the movie plays fair and has an intriguing third act that ties the story together and provides the aforementioned "goose-bumps." The well-written climax matches the intelligence of the set-up.
I admire a lot of things about Identity. The cast is well chosen. John Cusack has the lead as a stoic, resourceful ex-cop. Iím always pleasantly surprised by Cusackís range. Remember his role as the assassin in Grosse Point Blank? This time he plays the tough guy straight up. Ray Liotta, Amanda Peet, John Hawkes and Alfred Molina are solid in supporting roles.
Identity offers us story, acting and ďatmosphere.Ē Itís always raining and dark and brooding and all the cool stuff you expect from a movie like this. Our director James Mangold has a gifted touch. Iím not surprised Mangold has only directed a few movies, but his credits include 1995ís Heavy and 1997ís Cop Land. This is a smart director who (in only five films) has worked with the following talent:
Liv Tyler, Sylvester Stallone, Harvey Keitel, Winona Ryder, Meg Ryan, Hugh Jackman, and, Oscar winners Shelley Winters, Angelina Jolie, Robert De Niro, Vanessa Redgrave and Whoopi Goldberg. Give Mangold extra credit for directing Girl Interrupted, which gave Jolie her Academy Award. Also, consider the fact that Stallone did his best work in over twenty years working with Mangold in Cop Land. By the way, thatís the ďshortĒ list of good actors heís worked with.
Identity was just released on DVD. Itís a Hollywood mutt. Identity is M. Night Agatha Hitchcock vs. Silence of the Bump in the Dark Gothic Hell House. I canít wait to see it again.
SCORE: 3 Beers
John Cusack has been one of my favorite actors of all time, and this movie goes far to show why.
Rc Cola's review of this movie is based on his hermit like life where his homosexual experiences
have apparently scarred his view of reality to the point that his judgment
of right and wrong has skewed
to the point that he's going to turn Jewish on us grow long sideburns and quote famous Jewish phrases. I'd
type a few now but I'm getting too hammered to think of cheap ass shots to take at him so I'll just ambush him
in a parking lot when he least expects it and give him a mushroom on his forehead. Before I go off into a total
disarray of confusioning away from this movie I shall......refocus. As RC puts it, Uncle Fester has multiple
personalities.....Wait, that's the old school term. Now it's Disassociative Personality Disorder, it means the
same thing but what the fuck. According to modern mental therapy there is not really a way to treat this mental
disorder with prescription drugs.....The only way is to either join them all under one umbrella or as this movie shows
whack them all off at the Bates Motel. The personalities are all fairly unique and differ quite differently from one
another. Needless to say the local and weather setting of this movie really set the tone. Imagine a desolate shitpile motel
in the middle of nowhere with some dumb ass lowlife running it.....throw in a bunch of other mental cases and Jake Busey and
you've got quite a little thriller. Goose bumps.......no......cool movie.....yes. Get ready for the Mushroom RC, did you
only watch the first twenty minutes again? Oh and "Whores don't get a second chance."