Goodness Prevails in a Complicated World
The self loathing complexis an honest portrayal of any murderer, who has any shred of conscience. Every time Frank Logan introduces a new client to the hereafter, he considers the one thing he knows that he is really good at - killing another human being. In every instance that human being is himself.
Actor Michael Keaton, became Director Michael Keaton, and his freshman effort is a spare compilation of the social facets of the broad spectrum of life's stage, but does concentrate on the films two key characters: Hitman Frank Logan, Keaton, and Kate Frazier, Kelly MacDonald, and uses every other character in his morality play to support the paths that these two characters take together and apart. Kate Frazier has migrated to Chicago to escape her abusive husband, Michael, Bobby Cannavale, and intuitively wants to hide and escape her past.
In keeping her past a secret, she is not exhibiting weakness: Remember, she did leave her abusive mate. Her desire is to make a new life away from him and her past. It takes real strength to begin anew, and Kate exhibits more than real strength: She exudes an inner, almost angelic, sweetness.
Everyone that meets Kate intuitively likes her. Men want to both woo her and protect her, especially after they all notice her bruised face and her beaten eye. Her new office mate, Diane, played Darlene Hunt, befriends her immediately. She explains that it must be her accent (a Scottish accent, which is Kelly MacDonald's natural accent), which I also bought for this newcomer's popularity, but as I considered the film as it ran its 110 minutes of runtime, and the next morning, I began to understand her attraction as much more - she possessed the essence of God's grace.
Caught up in the swirling events of a new life, Kate feels a certain peace when prays to her one constant - her Lord and Savior.
Frank Logan, on the other hand, has none of God's grace. Frank is an odd amalgamation of someone who possible was raised in the word, but has definitely lost his way as a murderer for hire. The night he met the ebullient Kate, he was standing on the ledge of a roof preparing for his next career choice - "do I go or do I stay." Frank had just shot a stranger to death from that rooftop, just before Kate, who was looking skyward in wonder of the fresh falling snow, saw him on that ledge and pleaded, "No." Frank did not jump, he did however fall, but backwards and on the roof, the same place from whence he had just took another unsuspecting man's life.
Kate saved Frank's sorry life, and Frank is therefore drawn to her as a moth is drawn to the light. Frank follows her to her new apartment, and assists her in her efforts to lug a very big Christmas tree to upper flat. As she says goodbye immediately after receiving Frank's help, he says, "I found a girl under a tree."
Kate: "Sorry?" [from behind the a partially closed door]
Frank: "You find presents under a tree, I found a girl under a tree."
Kate: " You must have been a very good boy."
And the look Actor Keaton gives Actor MacDonald is telling in its subtle manner of conveying his inner soul hidden under multiple layers of malevolent endeavors. Kate, I believe, discovers whatever speck of goodness that remains in Frank's corroded spirit, and hopefully all will benefit from some level of redemption. Kate's goodness leads her to constantly seek redemption in him who died for her sins. Maybe Frank will follow a proper path to a better life? That is the question that is left to be answered in this very real depiction of a complicated world, and one's most imperfect life.
Keaton and MacDonald using spare words to connect with each other's characters and then with us, the audience.
Michael Keaton made a good film of Ron Lazzeretti's story. I hearily suggest the picture, for its story that makes sense to me. The acting is good, especially between Keaton and MacDonald, and that makes sense too.
Rated R. Released on DVD October 20, 2009.
This post appears courtesy of our sister site, Beaufort County NOW, with their expressed permission.