Saturday, January 17, 2009

Ripple Effect (2008) R - 2½ Stars

They say that everything happens for a reason. That one change in a plan can have a rippling effect throughout everything else it touches. That is the main point behind the film. Unfortunately the movie's direction gets lost and is slow paced in bringing the two men together. But, Forest Whitaker just viciously attacks any role he takes on, as well as Madsen and Driver, but I didn't feel the connection until almost the end of the movie. I guess it's hard to write, direct, produce and star in your own movie. However, the movie does make a strong point for me that, sometimes you go looking for what you think matters in life without realising you're not living in the day - today, it just was not executed well.

Amer Atrash (Philippe Caland) is a clothing designer from Lebanon that came to American to live out his dream on a 90 day Visa Pass. He's living the American dream with a nice house, lovely wife Sherry (Virginia Madsen), and his daughter Charlie. He's so close to making it big time, but hasn't slept right for the last 15 years. The vision of hitting a man Phillip Blackman (Forest Whitaker), leaving him in a wheelchair, haunts him and he feels he is being punished now, when his business and personal life are having problems. He finally admits his sin to his wife who is on the verge of leaving him as she feels extremely lonely and neglected by him.

He sets out to find Phillip and confess his tragic story to him in hopes of forgiveness. Kitty (Minnie Driver), is Phillip's wife and sings in a local bar. After the set, she lures a man to come home with her an her husband in order to pleasure her since her husband can not any longer. Amer, is brought back to the home but he's not looking for sex with Kitty, but to confess to Phillip. After being thrown out of the home by Kitty from rejection, he quietly waits outside till he can find the time to approach Phillip and finally does as Phillip is teaching students about certain manifestations we have no control over. It is then, he breaks down to Phillip and tells him of what he has done and he does not understand the meaning of life anymore - how can Phillip be so happy and calm while a prisoner of his wheelchair. As the two become closer, they both realise that fateful day, 15 years ago, happens for exactly the right reasons.

Monterey Media, YBG Productions
Director: Philippe Caland
Writer: Philippe Caland
Producer: Philippe Caland
I viewed 1/09

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