Judge David Johnson has five fingers...on both hands, actually.
What price would you pay for freedom?
Facts of the Case
Martijn (Phillippe) is a Dutch pianist on his way to Morocco to start a food program for starving kids. It sounds like a pretty worthy effort and he's ready to roll until he's violently accosted on a bus and shot up with a powerful tranquilizer. When he comes to, he's bound to a chair and confronted by Muslim named Ahmat (Fishburne). Ahmat doesn't think Martijn is who he says he is and proceeds to interrogate him. Who is he? What is his purpose for traveling to Morocco? Where did he get all that money for the food program? And where did he learn such an awesome Dutch accent?
I enjoyed Five Fingers and recommend it, with two big caveats:
What might have been a gamebreaker in a lesser movie isn't here, because the twist is pretty freakin' good. I knew it was coming, but when it hit I was still impressed. Much of that success is due to the stellar performances of the cast, particularly Phillippe, Fishburne, and Gina Torres (Serenity), who plays a Muslim interrogator. These folks are obviously invested in the goings-on (a point they reinforce in the accompanying documentary) and their willingness to sell the writing pays off with the jarring denouement.
That's all I'll say, because in all likelihood I've probably given away too much already.
Five Fingers gets a push, despite the hang-ups. It's well-made, well-acted, and manages to engage, despite its dialogue-heavy, one-setting nature.
The DVD: a clean 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer and center-channel heavy 5.1 surround are joined by two extras, Endgame, the aforementioned featurette, and a hilarious trivia track you know was put together by interns who were bored. A couple of samples: "Left-handedness is relatively uncommon" and, my favorite, "A sponge bath is the recommended way to clean a newborn baby, until the umbilical cord falls off."
Worth a look, if you've got the patience.
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Scales of Justice
• Trivia Track
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