Publicity Stills of "Red Eye"
(Courtesy from UIP)

Genre: Thriller
Director: Wes Craven
Starring: Rachel McAdams, Cillian Murphy, Brian Cox, Jayma Mays, Laura Johnson
RunTime: 1 hr 25 mins
Released By: UIP
Rating: PG

Opening Day: 1 September 2005

Synopsis :

Lisa Reisert (Rachel McAdams, Mean Girls, Wedding Crashers) hates to fly, but the terror that awaits her on the night flight to Miami has nothing to do with a fear of flying. Moments after takeoff, Lisa's seatmate, Jackson (Cillian Murphy, 28 Days Later, Batman Begins), menacingly reveals the real reason he's on board: he is an assassin out to kill a rich and powerful businessman and Lisa is the key to his success. If she refuses to cooperate, her own father will be killed by an assassin awaiting a call from Jackson. Trapped within the confines of a jet at 30,000 feet, Lisa has nowhere to run and no way to summon help without endangering her father, her fellow passengers and her own life. As the miles tick by, Lisa knows she is running out of time as she desperately looks for a way to thwart her ruthless captor and stop a terrible murder.

Movie Review:

Standing at 85 mins, considering a $9 price, doesn't convince much entertainment value but the same applies to most rollercoasters where you have to wait an hour for a ride that last less than two minutes. For that i consider Red Eye one helluva deal.

Lisa Reisert (Rachel McAdams) is taking the red eye back to Miami after attending her grandmother's Texas funeral. When the flight is delayed, she strikes up a conversation and shares a drink with the charming Jackson (Cillian Murphy). As the plane finally boards, Lisa is pleasantly surprised to discover she and the good looking young man are sharing a row together. A fancy appeal starts to develope and an evitable love might just blossom.

Up till here, as based on the most misleading trailer, sinister lurks behind the curtain and thus begins the terror.

Welcome to the tightly wound and tautly executed Red Eye, the new thriller from "Nightmare on Elm Street" and "Scream" maestro Wes Craven. This is a stripped-down adrenalinized crowd-pleaser. It builds suspense expertly, propelled by the sizzling performances of the two leads, a reasonably intelligent script and Craven's crackerjack direction. Sure, it isn't the most original cookie in the jar, but that doesn't make it any less tasty, this slick B-movie thrill-ride breaking out is quite a white-knuckled surprise.

To lay it all out, Red Eye doesn't have an original bone in its entire 85-minute body. Any reasonably intelligent viewer is going to know what's going to happen from start to finish long before the characters does. It just doesn't matter, though, the script doesn't offer anything new, it never treats its audience with disrespect. Red Eye is easily the single best big studio old-fashioned suspense to hit screens.

As assured and confident as Craven's direction, this is easily his best work since the original "Scream" he'd be nowhere without stars McAdams and Murphy. Murphy takes this villain, carefully crafting a portrait of evil so seductively chilling it's no reason he's considered one of the finest young actors working today. certainly isn't the case this time, almost half the picture dedicated to finding out what makes Jackson tick.

But, as good as Murphy is, this is McAdams show from start to finish. Quickly proving herself to be one of best fresh-faced talents of her generation, this new action heroine has done everything from light comedy (Mean Girls), to straight romantic drama (The Notebook), to face-out comedy (Wedding Crashers) and soared in every one. Now she gets to use all those abilities in one distinct, emotionally empowering package, her Lisa emerging as a tightly-wound fireball gaining strength the closer the plane gets to its final destination.

Craven keeps the claustrophobia high and the pace fast, smoothing out many of the script's bumpier passages simply by pressing down upon the accelerator. He also sets everything up beautifully, showcasing numerous quiet character moments or glimpses of the people populating the plane all in order to set the stage for each of the tools and tricks Lisa will need to make a getaway. It's all very old-school. Over the years, both Phone Booth and Cellular have succeeded in delivering fast-paced thrills out of a miniscule concept. Red Eye falls directly into that camp. Red Eye delivers brisk escapism, hooking viewers with two solid lead performances and sweeping them in for its let's-play-along trip.

Not that I want people to think this is anywhere near as good as it sounds. It's isn't, but by the time rockets are fired, cars are crashed and a crazed maniac pulls a knife it's still nearly impossible not to admit Craven's pic is a class B-movie act. The audience gasped, laughed, jeered and cheered all the way to the requisite western-style showdown where the mouse finally finding a way to become the cat's worst nightmare. Sure it's silly but that doesn't make it any less entertaining. The key to the movie is it's confident combination of no-frills familiar formula, suspense tactics exercise, and the varied touch of collection on stress, fear, and control.

In fact, I'd go so far as to say "Red Eye" is a flight worth booking.

Movie Rating:

("Nothing beats a good-old-fashioned thriller. It'll start you out sitting comfortably in your seat and will move you to the very edge when it's done. Wes Craven is BACK!")

Review by Lokman B S

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