Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Secret in Their Eyes. (2009)
Juan José Campanella

I don't know who does the Oscar voting or if anyone actually sees the foreign-language entries to get to vote on them (because this one only came out here last month, a few months after the 2010 Oscars wrapped up and pronounced it with a "Win") -- but after waiting an awfully lengthy two hours for the "pre-fall M. Night twist,"
I'd say skip this one in the theaters and concentrate on the
Millennium-trilogy instead.  [UPDATE: Skip The Girl Who Played With Fire. See -- I don't know, maybe I Am Love? I'll look into it...]

The Secret in Their Eyes is a well-done film with quite a few moments of wonderful camera movement (pay particular attention to the scene at the soccer stadium, and the later scene of the two central characters with the villain in the elevator). But at the heart of the story is a good deal of clunkiness -- bumbling cops and a somewhat dry love affair, whether sometimes played for comic effect or not, made the entire production a whole lot clunkier than it could have been.

It needed a shot of chemistry, and felt more like a TV crime-drama than a film. Campanella is more known for works on TV shows such as: House, Law & Order, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, 30 Rock, Ed, The Guardian... I'm not saying The Secret in Their Eyes is a bad film because it isn't. I am saying that there were much better foreign films last year, especially Oscar-competitor The White Ribbon. And I'm also saying that this felt like a very good TV show, and not an astounding, thrilling, life-changing film.

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