Movie and Film Reviews (MFR) Thrillers Shattered: good deja-vu

Shattered: good deja-vu

           How far would you go to protect your family? How far would you go to protect yourself? Which one is more important? In a little movie set in present day Chicago called Shattered, we find such answers in the performances by Gerard Butler, Maria Bello and Pierce Brosnan.

             Shattered(or Butterfly on a wheel, in Canada) is about a couple, Neal and Abby Randal (Maria Bello and Gerard Butler, respectively)  living the american dream: they have the perfect marriage, perfect house in Chicago, and a perfect daughter. Everything is wonderful- until one day Neal and Abby are abducted by gun-wielding madman Tom Ryan ( played chillingly by Pierce Brosnan). They are at his mercy for the next 24 hours, jumping through his hoops- otherwise their daughter is as good as dead. Peddling 300 dollars off strangers, climbing clock towers, and delivering mysterious envelopes to Neal’s office are just some of the tasks the Randals do; meanwhile, we learn a little bit more about Ryan as time goes on, and the line between wronged man and madman blurs until you begin to ask yourself- who is the good and who is the bad?

               The actors in Shattered give a good, solid performance. Eye candy Gerard Butler  brings an intensity to his role as in all his other movies. The breakout star, though, is Pierce Brosnan, who goes from the James Bond we all know and love to a cold eyed, vengeful psycho.  Maria Bello is not remarkable, but she does hold her own.

                   The story and direction is reminiscent of Ron Howard’s Ransom. The movie starts out slow, but it builds up like a rollercoaser until BAM! it takes off at high speed, with twists and turns the whole way. There’s also a sense of foreboding throughout the entire movie that keeps you on the edge of your seat. One thing I did notice is that Neal, like Tom Mullen in Ransom, is being punished for some indiscretions he may or may not have had, but you don’t find out until the end. This movie always keeps you guessing.

                    All in all,  I enjoyed it. It tends to duplicate Ransom, but it duplicates what I liked about that film. Also, just about anything Gerard Butler touches is golden, film-wise. So far, there has not been one movie with him in it that I haven’t liked. I would definitely recommend this picture.

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