Director: Mikael Håfström
Starring: Clive Owen, Jennifer Aniston, Vincent
RunTime: 1 hr 47 mins
Released By: BVI
Rating: NC-16 (Violence)
Day: 5 January 2006
executive Charles Schine (Clive Owen) is just another Chicago
commuter who regularly catches the 8:43am train to work. But
the one day he misses his train and meets Lucinda Harris (Jennifer
Aniston), his life is changed forever.
is charming, beautiful and seductive. Despite the fact that
each are married with children, their attraction to one another
is magnetic. Lunch dates quickly become cocktails after work,
and before long, Charles and Lucinda’s infatuation leads
them to a hotel room. Their seemingly perfect affair goes
terribly awry when LaRoche (Vincent Cassel), a brutal stranger,
breaks into their room and holds them at gunpoint. This once
illicit liaison turns into a nightmare more dangerous and
violent than either could have ever imagined.
Charles’ life soon becomes filled with deception, blackmail,
violence and crime. Unable to confide in his wife or speak
to the police, Charles finds himself trapped in a world he
doesn’t recognize, with no trace of the life he once
remember to lock the door when you're in some sleazy hotel
engaged in serious hanky panky. You'd never know who might
be watching, or what might happen when you literally get caught
with your pants in between your legs.
Owen, such a strong contender to take over the Bond role (until
Daniel Craig snagged it), plays everyday executive Charles
Schine. He seems to have the perfect family - beautiful wife,
adorable child, except that Mr Everyday has everyday problems
too. He loses his major customer account, can't get along
with his boss, his relationship with his wife has lost its
romance, and has huge medical bills to pay for his daughter,
who has kidney failure.
his routine commute to work, he chances upon Jennifer Aniston's
Lucinda Harris, also an executive, working in a financial
company. Before long, they start to enjoy each other's company
during their train rides, sharing family details, and begin
to see each other more outside of their routine journeys to
opportunity to break from mundane routine, Charles falls for
attractive Lucinda, and the film takes its time for the two
to deliberate their actions and decision to betray their spouses.
And it is precisely then when the movie picks up the pace
slightly, allowing the audience to experience their first
anti-climax (pardon the pun), as the couple gets blackmailed
by a French criminal Philippe LaRoche (Vincent Cassel, last
seen also as a criminal in Ocean's Twelve), when he enters
the scene having caught Charles with his hand in the cookie
jar. What happens after is probably every couple's nightmare
in a situation like this.
start to go awry for Charles, as LaRoche attempts to blackmail
him for more, threatening to disclose everything to his family.
His mundane world begins to fall apart, and it all seems so
helpless. You feel Charles' sense of despair as he has nobody
to turn to initially; he can't speak to his wife about it,
Lucinda's in a state of shock and shame, they can't go to
the police because that will mean explaining their purpose
at the hotel room. He tries to get back at LaRoche, but LaRoche
always stays a step ahead, and shows Charles what he's capable
of by calling and visiting the Schine family home.
both Owen and Aniston share top billing in Derailed, the focus
gets shifted to Owen as the movie goes along, with Aniston
relegated to minor appearances in the second and final acts.
We've already seen what Clive Owen is capable of in his roles
in 2005, as the insecure man in Closer, and the tough as nails
Dwight in Sin City. Here, we see both roles combined into
one, with his character transitioning from meek, to the dog
which bites back when forced into the corner.
is precisely his acting that maintains the audience's interest
in wanting to know how he would ever climb out of the mess
he got himself into. There are clever twists in the film,
but to the sharped eyed viewer, you might think that Aniston
gave it away if you're familiar with her nuanced acting style.
There are also certain plot situations that had stretched
Credibility, but tried to redeem itself by offering plausible
explanations, if the audience buys in.
this movie has a message to those who are tempted to give
marital infidelity a go at. Never give in, and always come
clean. You're just not going to get as lucky as some fictional
Clive Owen performance which lifts this thriller from mediocrity)
by Stefan Shih