Synopsis: Charlotte Bless (Nicole Kidman) writes obsessively to prisoners on death row and helps journalist Ward Jansen (Matthew McConaughey) investigate what they perceive is the miss trial of murderer John Van Wetter (John Cusack). Jansen's younger brother Jack (Zac Efron) helps out as a driver and becomes obsessed with Charlotte.
Stan's thoughts: This film has lots of nastiness in it, unexpected nastiness - a couple of gasp moments from the audience. But as a noir thriller it doesn't always work mainly because the investigation into the murder trial becomes secondary and inconsequential to what is happening between Charlotte and Jack. It is a film that oozes sexual tension.
For me it almost worked better as a character piece with a grittier edge than you'd get in a straight drama. Nicole Kidman's performance is a stand out and it was so freshing to see her playing a different role. There is nearly 20 years age gap between her and Efron and I didn't doubt for one moment his attraction to her.
Cusack also puts in a great performance - he has this look that that says so much that is not very nice it is chilling.
This wasn't the film I was expecting and I liked it for that, flaws and all.
- Stan's: 63%
- IMDB: 57%
- Metascore: 43%
- Rotten Tomatoes: 43%