Imaginative story, slightly conflicted filmmaking
This feels like a serious crime movie, but plays like a comedy. Laurence Olivier and Michael Caine play against each other in a tour-de-force of bantering. Olivier is a knick-knack collecting old mystery writer, and Caine is the one who wants to marry his wife.
The setup is very much in the style of so many English mysteries - symbolic of class struggle, ordinarily mild-mannered sorts being driven past their usual limitations, and so on.
Images of various portraits, life-size animated sculptures, and various knick-knacks are continually spliced into the visual narrative. To a degree, this represents the mad and chaotic nature of what is goin on, but it also gives rise to an odd feeling of being watched. While in the end, what was being attempts makes sense, it feels somewhat sloppy to me, something that got more attention than it seemed to deserve.
We are left in doubt for some time whether and what particular crime has been committed. The concept is fairly clever, and I'll refrain from the details lest I spoil this for anyone - as most of the enjoyment of the film comes from watching it unfold.
Originally, this was a play. It shows some of its origins pretty plainly in they way the scenes are played out, focusing largely on long, two-character scenes. I'll concede this version probably beats out a stage version by the more involved use of props - and it doesn't hurt to have such skilled actors in the main roles.
And my usual rant on titles - why is this Sleuth? It's not completely inappropriate, as it correctly identifies the genre, and there is indeed some sleuthing about involved, but it's not really the focus at all. It's a bit like the close ups on these life size dolls - leading us astray. It's not a bad idea, but it's a misdirected misdirection - unnecessary and not really underscoring anything about the film. It's as if they are trying a little too hard to build up the details.
Full profile for Sleuth
Offsite info: Internet Movie Database
login to submit an article
A Film Review
2006-03-10 06:51:39... CheriLacy
The Lazy Moviewatcher's Top... Something of 2004
Despite being busy watching all of 2003's movies at home, this reviewer did actually hit the theater a few times this year
2004-12-30 22:39:13... andrew
2003 Awards Tracker
So many awards, so much recognition - it's amazing how these people don't develop an ego
2004-01-29 21:45:11... andrew
How to set up a cheap home theatre
Constant upgrades and a host of revolving standards make the home theatre market hard to decide when to jump in.
2003-05-27 17:52:42... mastadonfarm
submit a review here
submit a review here
indexes links credits privacy|
all contributed material © their respective authors
everything else © 2018 thatcow
link to this site