I was always interested in seeing this movie, but when I found out it was written by Kurt Wimmer (Equilibrium), my attention was caught even more. And on top of the good reviews its been getting, I knew I had to see this sooner than later. Clyde Shelton (Gerard Butler) is a good, law abiding citizen. Then his wife and young daughter are brutally murdered. Now a broken man, Clyde puts everything into the case to put the two men who broke into his house in the lethal injection chair. But instead of taking any risks, Clyde's lawyer, Nick Rice (Jamie Foxx), makes a deal with the one who actually did the killings that would get him out in about 4 years, but put the more innocent of the two on death row. And after 10 years, when it's time for the one to die, something goes wrong, which starts a string of events that lands Clyde in jail. But that's not the end of the murders. Somehow, Clyde is still killing people from inside the high security prison, and it's up to Nick to see through the mind games and figure out how to stop him before it's too late.

This movie is intense. In the first 3 or so minutes, we're already witness to a brutal slaying. And it only gets crazier from there. But it's not all dark and gritty. There's a surprising amount of humor to be found, albeit dark humor. But it was interesting to find yourself cringing and laughing in the same scenes at times.

Another interesting note about the movie is that there really isn't a good guy or bad guy. Both Butler and Foxx play both roles. At times, you feel Butler's pain and wonder if he'll get away with it. At other times, you're like "this dude's insane." On the other hand, you can see Foxx's corruptness, while also seeing his softer family/friend side. It's one of those rare instances where you're not sure which guy you want to win or lose, or if you really want both to win in some form or fashion.

There's really not much to say about the movie. Outside of the premise, which the movie pulls off well, it's your basic (though pretty imaginative) thriller, so you know what you're in for going in. It kept me on the edge of my seat and guessing, which is more than I can say for a lot of other thrillers these days. I do admit to, at one point, having thought I figured it out, only for minutes later to be disproved.

The acting is good, the writing is good... it's all good. The cinematography isn't anything to cry out in the streets about, though there is a particularly beautiful (short) sequence in the climax involving fire that I thought was brilliantly shot. But yeah, if you're into thrillers, and don't mind a bit of brutality here and there, I really recommend it.

A Keanu 'Whoa' 

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