Sunday, February 28, 2016

Perfect Stranger (2007)

Director: James Foley
Starring: Halle Berry, Bruce Willis, Giovanni Ribisi, Richard Portnow, Gary Dourdan, Florencia Lozano, Nicki Aycox, Kathleen Chalfant, Gordon MacDonald, Daniella Van Grass, Paula Miranda, Patti D'Arbanville

Reporter Rowena (Berry) and her right-hand man Miles (Ribisi) discover the secret sexual encounters of an anti-gay Republican senator, but the investigation is shut down by her boss (Portnow) and effectively fires her. On her way home, she meets childhood acquaintance Grace (Aycox) with proof of the extramarital affair she's having with Harrison Hill, a wealthy marketing exec (Willis). After Grace is found dead, Rowena goes undercover to find out whether Hill is the murderer.

Full of problems from the beginning, this cliched political thriller stinks of rubbish plotting and inconsistency, credited to Jon Bokenkamp, writer of the badly reviewed The Call and the plan bad Taking Lives, and Todd Komarnicki, the producer of Elf(?). Foley, who has a great backlog of work, does what he can with what he's got, but he flounders in producing anything worthwhile and the cast don't help much. The stupid backstory flash involving Rowena and her father molesting her is ridiculous.

Berry hasn't been in anything decent since her oscar-winning performance in Monster's Ball, given I have not seen Things We Lost in the Fire or Cloud Atlas, and here is no exception. Ribisi once again plays the weird, eccentric sidekick who turns out to be not all he seems - I guessed his role after the first scene! Willis gives his usual monotone performance. Clearly this project affected Foley so much he's been forced to direct the Fifty Shades of Grey sequels!


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