There’s a reason why I walked out of A Few Good Men when it first premiered: so I’d never have to see it again. The sexist High Crimes is nowhere near as bombastic but how many times must we see the same film? First it was Cuba, now it’s El Salvador. It’s 1988 in Las Colinas and someone from a US army battalion has gone G.I. postal on the town’s villagers. Back in the present-day land of the free, faux feminist Claire Kubik (Ashley Judd) is busting balls inside the courtroom and demanding that her eggs be inseminated inside her husband Tom’s tool shed. Tom’s (James Caviezel) real name is Ron, who claims he’s been falsely accused of killing nine villagers back in Las Colinas. His mantra is simple: “You don’t fight the military system.” Guess Ron/Tom forgot he’s married to Claire Kubik, attorney extraordinaire. Enter stock characters: gratuitous-male-lawyer-companion-with-drinking-problem, Charles Grimes (Morgan Freeman, always better than his material); a sister (Amanda Peet) so loose and bored it’s only a matter time before she gets kidnapped and starts standing by a fax machine; a pin-up lieutenant lawyer (Adam Scott) that could be working for the wrong side; and a few wiley, twitchy-eyed Hispanics either fighting for or against the evil Gringo empire. High Crime’s answer to “you can’t handle the truth” is “you don’t care about the truth.” If you squint just right, you might swear your watching A General’s Daughter, Double Jeopardy, or Kiss the Girls. Even without American flags egregiously waving on the military base you still have to get past the endless parade of midnight threats, double-crossings and lapses in logic to ever really savor the film’s jazzy score. That cool sound you hear is director Carl Franklin’s desperate attempt at covering up the fact that he’s officially sold his soul to Hollywood.
- Touchstone Pictures
- 105 min
- Carl Franklin
- Cary Brickley, Yuri Zeltser
- Ashley Judd, Morgan Freeman, James Caviezel, Adam Scott, Amanda Peet, Bruce Davison, Tom Bower, Juan Carlos Hernandez
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