Out of Time : Movie Review

One could probably best categorize Carl Franklin's Out of Time as "disappointing, but barely watchable." A moody crime story featuring Denzel Washington, Eva Mendes, and Sanaa Lathan, Out of Time is the latest effort from the actor-turned-director. Franklin, best known for his edgy, atmospheric thrillers (One False Move, Devil in a Blue Dress) has the "atmospheric" part of the equation working here, but not the "edgy" aspect. Out of Time is a generic thriller with nary a surprise in store for the experienced film noir viewer. Worse still, the central motive underlying the crime doesn't stand up to cursory inspection.

Out of Time introduces us to Matt Whitlock (Washington), the Chief of Police of Banyan Key. Currently in the process of divorcing his wife, Detective Alex Whitlock (Eva Mendes), Matt has embarked upon an affair with a married woman. Ann (Sanaa Lathan), Matt's high-school sweetheart, is wed to abusive ex-quarterback Chris (Dean Cain), but is willing to renew her romance with her ex-flame. One day, Ann confesses to Matt that she is seriously ill with cancer. Her only hope is to travel to Europe and receive experimental treatments - a trip she doesn't have the money for. Eager to save her, Matt steals $485,000 in drug money from the police safe. No sooner does Ann have the money than her house burns down. Two charred bodies are found inside, along with evidence of arson, and Matt finds himself in the uncomfortable position of being the #1 suspect - unless he can hide his past relationship with Ann from the lead investigator, who happens to be his wife. Plus, the DEA wants the money that is no longer in the Banyan Key PD's safe.

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Author : James Berardinelli