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Director: Mikael Hafstrom
Screenplay: Stuart Beattie (From novel by James Siegel)
Cast: Jennifer Aniston, Clive Owen, Vincent Cassel, Melissa George, RZA, Xzibit
Color, approx 112 Minutes
MPAA Classification: Unrated DVD version
Genre: Drama, Thriller, Action
Reviewed by Jim LewisIf anyone could request a "Do over" for an entire day, it would be Charles Schine (Clive Owen.) Not since Fatal Attraction (1987) have we seen someone so sincerely regret a moment of passion. If the world needs another propaganda film for men to "keep it in their pants," this one should do the trick.
A chance encounter on a commuter train between two people not inclined to such activities goes very haywire. Lucinda Harris (Jennifer Aniston) is an investment advisor with a world-class firm. Charles Schine is an advertising executive with a medium size firm. LaRoche (Vincent Cassel) is every married, unfaithful coupleís worst nightmare.
After phoning lies to their mates, many cocktails and much indecision, our two beginners find themselves within striking distance of a cheap hotel. In the room, passion takes over, until LaRoche horns in. One serious butt-kicking later, battered and bruised, missing his wallet and money, Charles puts Lucinda in a taxi and limps off.
How does this situation get from bad to MUCH worse? LaRoche blackmails the couple. He is brazen and he is hard. How Charles attempts to deal puts himself in danger, and then attracts the curiosity of the police.
Charles is flailing, trying to bring this chapter of his life to a close. He is in a terrible hole, and canít stop digging. Steal money from his job? Put his family in hock? Clive Owen makes it seem possible, just ill-advised, under all the pressure.
I thought the twists worked, and the movie was very entertaining.
One casting choice had unexpected baggage for me. Melissa George (Charlesís wife) has quite an action background, and her season long stint on "Alias" as a murderous double agent put some red-herring tint on the innocent spouse and mother.
The DVD contains Deleted Scenes and "The Making of Derailed."
Grist for post-movie chat over coffee: Do you think Charles has learned his lesson? Did you know Melissa George, and did her presence confound the already surprising plot?
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