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Don't Say a Word

Director:Gary Felder
Writer:Anthony Peckham and Patrick Smith Kelley
20th Century Fox; R; 110 minutes
Release:9/01
Cast:Michael Douglas, Sean Bean, Brittany Murphy

Michael Douglas dons the well-fitting cloth of an upper-class Everyman coming apart at the seams in his latest movie, Don't Say a Word. Unfortunate timing means that a thriller dealing with domestic terrorists in Manhattan simply isn't what moviegoers want to see. The plot isn't as sensitive as Schwarzenegger's indefinitely postponed film,Collateral Damage, about a firefighter who loses his family in a skyscraper bombing, but it does involve evil crooks and wreckage in NYC. Those who go to the film can expect a slickly produced tale of kidnapping and mind games whose fast pace camouflages the lack of coherent plot and characters.

Douglas is Dr. Conrad, a successful child psychologist called to examine a pathological, mute 18-year-old girl (Brittany Murphy) who may be catatonic. The next day he finds his own daughter abducted by a gang of robbers who demand that he extract a numerical combination from the mentally ill patient that will lead a stolen diamond. He has one day to pull it off.

Don't Say a Word is lopsided but decent, an entertaining piece of filler that arrived at the wrong time.


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