HollywoodChicago.com RSS   Facebook   HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter   Free Giveaway E-mail   

Film Review: Cillian Murphy, Robert De Niro in Messy ‘Red Lights’

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly versionE-mail page to friendE-mail page to friendPDF versionPDF version
No votes yet

CHICAGO – “Red Lights” is a mess. And yet it’s also not messy enough. Rodrigo Cortes follows up his vastly superior “Buried” with this supernatural tale filled with plot contrivances that would make M. Night Shyamalan call bullshit. Still, he does so with a direct, straightforward style when a bit less polish would have given it the character it’s missing. The script is a mess but the production is clean. It’s nonsense on a plot level but played seriously without nearly enough personality or edge. Even the film’s undeniably talented cast can’t save it.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

“Red Lights” starts with a promising series of scenes as Margaret Matheson (Sigourney Weaver) and her investigative partner Tom Buckley (Cillian Murphy) arrive at a run-down estate that is allegedly haunted. In a matter of minutes, they have not only found the source of the loud sounds in the night but debunked the psychic who has come to talk with people from the other side as long as the fee is high enough. That’s what Margaret and Tom do. They take down the charlatans who use people’s grief and willingness to believe and turn it into profit.

StarRead Brian Tallerico’s full review of “Red Lights” in our reviews section.

Tom and Margaret’s white whale is the legendary Simon Silver (Robert De Niro), a psychic who disappeared many years ago after the mysterious death of his greatest skeptic and has recently returned to the spotlight after years in self-imposed exile. As Silver becomes popular again, Tom & Margaret try to decipher his magic tricks. How is he pulling it off? Or could he really be what he claims to be? Supernatural elements continue to add up while Elizabeth Olsen, Toby Jones, and Craig Roberts play supporting roles.

The cat-and-mouse game of “Red Lights” could have been a clever one – two investigators deal with their own issues of belief as they try to cut the strings of a perceived magician who may actually be magical. It’s a very strong idea for a thriller. But Cortes makes so many mistakes with his set-up that they become the most memorable elements of his film. Other than his concept and his casting (you can’t deny that ensemble and it should be noted that none of the performances are a weakness…Murphy is the best thing about the film), Cortes consistently made bad choices at every stage of production.

StarContinue reading for Brian Tallerico’s full “Red Lights” review.

“Red Lights” stars Cillian Murphy, Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver, Elizabeth Olsen, Toby Jones, and Craig Roberts. It was written and directed by Rodrigo Cortes. It is playing in some markets now and opens in Chicago on August 3, 2012.

Red Lights
Red Lights
Photo credit: Millennium Entertainment

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.

Hot stories on the Web


User Login

Free Giveaway Mailing

TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles with Megan Fox

    CHICAGO - Look past the cheesy carbs and b-boy poses, this shiny mo-cap reboot of cartoon juggernaut “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” offers slick entertainment that makes for a welcome surprise for middle school fare. Proving that executive producer Michael Bay has both grown up but it still frightfully in tune with what jazzes teens, this surprise box office hit is indeed a nice slice of a blockbuster spectacle, whether or not a viewer cares about the turtles or not.

  • HoliDaze Front

    CHICAGO – Need a break from the noise of the holidays? Step Up Productions, – in residence at Chicago Dramatists Theater – present “HoliDaze,” a collection of six one-act plays, all dealing with the nature and nurture of the season. The showcase runs through December 21st, 2014.

Advertisement


HollywoodChicago.com on Twitter

archive

HollywoodChicago.com Top Ten Discussions
referendum
tracker