A Superb Action Thriller!
It seems strange to me that we live in an age where scripts for
mediocre thrillers such as "Firewall" can draw a big name like Harrison
Ford whilst this little gem goes seemingly unnoticed. However, don't
let the absence of any A-list Hollywood names stop you from checking
out "Already Dead" because Ron Eldard and Til Schweiger are perfectly
cast here. Never heard of them? Don't worry - you'll probably recognise
them when you see their faces and, if there really is a God, they'll
both soon headline much bigger movies.
What's fantastic about "Already Dead" is that it doesn't waste time
getting into the story. The movie begins with events set in motion. Our
first scene introduces us to Thomas Archer, a man evidently in some
degree of emotional turmoil, as he walks through a train station with a
large bag. What's in the bag? As he makes his journey towards his
destination the audience is given brief flashbacks which bring you up
to speed on what has already happened. As the present events unfold,
the flashbacks continue until they intersect at a specific point and
Thomas Archer is posed with a terrible decision.
I won't mention any more of the storyline because, for me, one of the
highlights was the way in which it progressed. Another review on IMDb
mentioned the lack of surprises which makes me wonder if we saw the
same movie. I was continually wondering about the motivations of
certain characters (in particular, Schweiger's character who is simply
known as 'The Man') and the ending I predicted never occurred (yet
still fully satisfied me). I also have to take issue with another
reviewer's comments that the movie was 'slow in the middle'. I didn't
find that all.
Despite "Already Dead" being a very polished production, it is
deliberately filmed in a very raw way which mainly uses hand-held
cameras to make you feel as though you're there with Archer during the
movie. Good performances from the two leads as well as the supporting
actors (Patrick Kilpatrick and Christopher Plummer) ensure that you're
gripped throughout. It also manages to not outstay its welcome; there
certainly weren't any moments when I found myself looking at my watch.
If you like smart thrillers with lots of action, I'd definitely
recommend checking out "Already Dead". I'd also recommend not reading
about the plot beforehand. Watch it without any knowledge of what will
be happening and you'll find yourself pleasantly surprised..
Lame - SPOILERS
The premise of the film is that Thomas Archer's son was murdered and
his wife was brutalized -- and he is given a chance at revenge when
(after Post Traumatic Stress Disorder therapy), he is put in a room
with a man strapped to a chair and told this was the culprit. He is
given a large table of implements with which to offer retribution:
drills, bats, nails, sledgehammers, torches, whatever you can think of
that someone could possibly want to use to physically hurt another
We go way too many scenes of torture before we figure out that The Man
Archer is torturing is not the man who committed the crime. The two
then create an uncomfortable alliance; who put them in this situation
Well, when all is said and done, we don't really care....