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UNTRACEABLE: DVD

SYNOPSIS:
A tech-savvy killer starts displaying his graphic murders on his own website - and the more people log on to watch the execution, the quicker the victim dies. The FBI's CyberCrime unit's Special Agent Jennifer Marsh (Diane Lane) is put in charge of the case, working in tandem with Agent Griffin Dowd (Colin Hanks) and Detective Eric Box (Billy Burke). Marsh and her team must race against the clock to track down the deranged mastermind who is virtually untraceable. Matters escalate when the deadly game of cat and mouse becomes personal.

Review by Andrew L. Urban:
Seamlessly blending the police procedural with serial killer horror, Untraceable is a solidly crafted thriller with white knuckle elements and top performances. Diane Lane is a great choice for the cybercrime investigator, taking the character out of the stock standard mould, with a single mum's domestic set-up to further texture Jennifer Marsh. Billy Burke provides excellent support as the intelligent detective and Colin Hanks is a likeable sidekick. But it's Diane Lane's show - and she's thoroughly engaging. Richard Brooks is also impressive as her boss, again avoiding stereotype.

Gregory Hoblit's experience with crime and police dramas on TV has sharpened his eye and given him the experience to turn out a fully loaded genre piece with a fresh uniform. The only reservation I have is that the last bit of detective work is revealed in a single statement by Marsh, instead of letting us discover the stitching clues ourselves as the investigators find them for themselves. Oh, and how in the climactic sequence the cops know the whereabouts of the creepy perp, Owen Reilly, brilliantly played by Joseph Cross - he was untraceable, after all.

The motivation for the crimes is well explained, though, albeit too many repeats of a sensation suicide video seems to be committing the very crime of which the motivation is made - and which earns such criticism from many quarters.

The film's opening sequences are especially well structured and edited, as we see how cybercrime investigators might really work. The internet is suddenly a scary place ... a whiz kid like this unhinged Reilly guy can, it seems, even hack into your car's electronics, your mobile phone - and in the case of a good movie like this, even our heads.

DVD special features include an audio commentary by director Gregory Hoblit plus four featurettes looking at the making of the film as well as the people involved.

Published September 4, 2008

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 1
Unfavourable: 1
Mixed: 0

UNTRACEABLE: DVD (MA)
(US, 2008)

CAST: Diane Lane, Billy Burke, Colin Hanks, Joseph Cross, Mary Beth Hurt, Peter Lewis, Tyrone Giordano, Perla Haney-Jardine

PRODUCER: Andy Cohen, Hawk Koch, Gary Lucchesi, Steven Pearl, Tom Rosenberg, Rishard S. Wright

DIRECTOR: Gregory Hoblit

SCRIPT: Alison Burnett, Mark Brinker, Robert Fyvolent

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Anastas Michos

EDITOR: David Rosenbloom

MUSIC: Christopher Young

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Paul Eads

RUNNING TIME: 100 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Universal

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: April 24, 2008

PRESENTATION: Widescreen

SPECIAL FEATURES: Audio commentary by Gregory Hoblit, Untraceable: The personnel files; The Blueprint of murder; tracking Untraceable

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Universal

DVD RELEASE: September 3, 2008







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