(out of 5)

It’s rather nice to see that so many Hollywood thrillers have been made lately with tough, uppity females in the leads (Gothika, High Crimes, Trapped); what a shame that they all totally suck. returns as Public Victim No. 1, playing a tough-as-nails patrol officer who has just been promoted to homicide detective and is immediately given a serial murder case. What makes this case special for her is the fact that all the victims are men with whom she has enjoyed one-night stands. Is it coincidence that she has slept with the victims, or is someone actually coming after her next?   plays the motor-mouthed commissioner who doubles as her mentor, while  shouts a lot for no reason as her dubiously moral partner. The mundane plot delivers nothing resembling what the title promises, and having an art house director like Philip Kaufman at the helm doesn’t improve the paint-by-numbers feeling one single bit. It is refreshing that there is no attempt to make Judd a ‘likeable’ woman for North American audiences to ‘identify’ with (i.e. she sleeps around without saying sorry to anybody for it, even if the story veers into cautionary tale bullshit territory), but there’s also nothing resembling a personality emanating from her either (nice try with the lo-glam makeup and bad hair though). The eventual ‘surprise’ ending is so predictable you might want to leave halfway through just to save yourself the waste of time.

Paramount Pictures, Intertainment AG, Kopelson Entertainment, Blackout Productions Inc., Harlequin Pictures

USA/Germany, 2004

Directed by

Screenplay by

Cinematography by

Produced by , , , ,

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by

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