Reviews

Angel Eyes

2

In the future, this film will serve as a textbook example of a star vehicle. Its leading lady is strong but weak, tough but vulnerable, worldly and beautiful but when no-one is looking, she's quite gauche and, shhhh, ooh, look, just a little imperfect. She's noble, humble, eloquent and now and then just, like, you know, tongue-tied, like we all get - and we can all relate to that, like, y'know, can't we?

This is the sort of film Madonna would have once been offered - the missing link between Body Of Evidence and The Next Best Thing - and its resolute badness proves one important point: to emerge from this mawkish mess seeming merely mediocre, Jennifer Lopez must be quite a good actress after all.

Strangely, it starts as a thriller, building a promising, Unbreakable-style tension. But as the twitchy, stand-offish Catch, Jim Caviezel is simply unbearable, a maudlin Dudley Do-Right who shuffles around with a heavy-lidded, beatific gormlessness that brings to mind Robin Williams on heavy sedatives. And once the brittle Sharon (Lopez) is hooked by his elusive and frankly creepy charm, the film reveals itself as a manipulative, shallow tearjerker in which everything you fear will happen does happen.

The architect of our misery here is director Luis Mandoki, the man who seriously posited a no-warts-and-all Meg Ryan as a career alcoholic in When A Man Loves A Woman. Angel Eyes is riddled with the same pomp and idiocy, encompassing spousal abuse and careless driving and reaching hysterical heights when Caviezel and Lopez lay their respective ghosts to rest with horrendous, po-faced gravitas.

Curiously, Lopez walks away from the wreckage intact, and her apparent inability to see that this is A DREADFUL FILM is even quite endearing. But really this is Freud via Friends, a loathsome piece of love-your-inner-child slop that trivialises everything it touches.

Verdict:

Trite, lazily written and acted with embarrassing self-indulgence by two actors who can do better and really ought to know better. This is nothing but emotional self-help porn, clearly aimed at people who enjoy daytime chat shows more than movies.

Film Details

  • 15
  • UK Theatrical Release Date: September 21st 2001

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