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The 100




Fallen
(1998)
Reviewed by Jason Coffman
Rating: 6 Beans

es, this is a review of "Fallen" starring Denzel Washington and directed by Gregory Hoblit, whose last movie was "Primal Fear," which starred Edward Norton, who got an Oscar nomination for his work. Those things don't keep "Fallen" from being a movie that isn't very good. Besides, you know when you saw the previews you and your friends called it "Preacher's Wife 2: The Harrowing."

As the movie starts, the audience is tricked into believing it may be genuinely entertained. Serial killer Edgar Reese (the always-reliable Elias Koteas of "Crash" and "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III") is being led to the gas chamber, where he will be executed. The man responsible for putting him in this unfortunate situation is detective John Hobbes (Washington). Reese sings "Time Is On My Side" to show off how hip he is, and then he dies. The camera cuts to a weird overhead view and then rests on this guy who doesn't say anything.

If I hadn't seen the previews for this film, this may have come as a surprise. However, as it was, I knew what was going to happen. Any of you who see a preview first will know what is going to happen. And by the end of the movie, you will know what happened because it is shown to you and explained so many times that there is NO POSSIBLE ROOM for error. This dumbing-down is a big part of why "Fallen" isn't as good as its premise: a demon who can move from body to body through a touch is chased by a tough-as-carpet tacks detective (it's Denzel Washington, he's just not that hard).

There are some good things about "Fallen." Embeth Davidtz ("Army of Darkness," "Schindler's List") plays Gretta Milano, a smart female character (rare in bad cinema). John Goodman, who is poised to make me not like him very much by starring in "Blues Brothers 2000," plays Hobbes' partner. And, after all, the plot was a pretty good idea in the first place.

However, the bad outweighs the good, or else the review wouldn't be here. It's boring. I nearly fell asleep during what was supposed to be the climactic finale. However, it did have an interesting conclusion. Of course, sitting through two hours of dull, dark movie with good acting and predictable twists (along with one INCREDIBLY cheap "jump scene") doesn't make it all better. See "Spice World" first, then maybe "Hard Rain." But make sure this is on your Bad Movie Night viewing list.


Other reviews for this movie:

Nathan Johnston




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