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Case Number 03301

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Sony // 1998 // 95 Minutes // Rated R
Reviewed by Judge Eric Profancik (Retired) // September 12th, 2003

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All Rise...

The Charge

She thought she found Mr. Right. She was dead wrong.

Opening Statement

I thought I had a screener that might be all right; I was dead wrong. Implicated is the type of movie that is best served with a twelve pack of a deliciously frosty and frothy beverage. You'll definitely need every can or bottle to make it through this tragic piece of work. If you don't happen to partake in the downing of sudsy potables, then you might find yourself going mad as you try to endure to the bitter end. Why would you want to torture yourself? Is there any reason to want to sit through such a painful 90 minutes? Maybe.

If nothing else, Implicated has earned a dubious distinction in my book, and that would be that this film has the worst acting I have seen in any medium in my entire life. I cannot recall a group of collected "actors" who were so pathetic in every utterance of a line as these. At first, it starts out as just bad, but it goes downhill from there. By the end, I felt as if my soul had been sucked out of me into the black hole formed by the incompetence on my TV screen. So, if watching bad acting is your thing, perhaps hoping to learn what not to do, then here is your masterpiece. For the rest of us, it is a coup de grâce!

Facts of the Case

Knucklehead Tom has spent months planning a perfect crime: the kidnapping of his boss' daughter, Katie. Somewhere along the way, Tom decided to bring his boss, Carl, into the plan, as they are best buds and Tom knows that the marriage between Carl and his wife, Chloe, is a bit rocky—because she's a lush. Though Carl runs Sun Joy Spas, it's really Chloe who has the big bucks in the family, as her father is rolling in the dough. As every spoiled, rich child should, Chloe has a trust fund worth $100,000, which is going to be the ransom demand for Katie.

Enlisting the help of his girlfriend, Ann, but keeping her in the dark, Tom easily kidnaps Chloe without raising any flags. Tom and Ann are pretending to take Chloe on a little vacation for a few days. With kid in hand, the ransom demand is made—for $800,000. Tom figures Chloe's dad is really loaded, so he alters the plan to get some real money for the effort. Carl doesn't like the change in plans at all. As it turns out, Carl is a bad liar and Chloe instantly deduces he's in on the crime. Doing what any sane person would do, Chloe picks up a shotgun and fires a couple of shots into Carl's chest.

Soon, Ann and Katie begin to bond. They develop a special relationship, and all the while Ann is still unaware of the sinister conspiracy she is a part of. It seems that Ann's daughter died a few years ago, and Katie appears to be filling that considerable hole in her heart.

Enter the police, led by the ever capable and cliché-spouting Detective Orr. She's good, very good (or at least the movie thinks she is), and she can tell something is wrong in Denmark—more than just the dead husband by the pool. She sticks her nose into matters and figures out that there's also been a kidnapping. With her detective radar at full strength, her gut tells her that Tom is involved, but she doesn't have the proof yet.

It wouldn't be a proper story if Ann didn't eventually figure out what was going on, and she does! She wants to return Katie to her mother, but Tom won't let her. "If you leave the house, I'll kill ya," Tom threatens.

As the whole sordid affair unfolds, what will happen to Katie? Will the ransom be paid? Will Chloe be discovered? Will Orr get her man?

The Evidence

I am not lying when I state that every single person in this film displays atrocious acting "abilities"—a term I use quite loosely. It could almost be a contest to determine who is the worst of them all if there weren't already a clear-cut winner: Ann. Every time she opens her mouth, every time she tries to emote, every time she wants to be realistic, she utterly and completely fails. It got to the point where you'd first cringe then laugh at her bravura piss-poor performance. Even more boggling than her complete lack of talent is the question of how and why she's in this movie in the first place? Who did she seduce? Who is she related to? Who is she blackmailing? But that isn't fair, because she is simply at the head of her class in this film. Who could forget the sheer and unbridled anger that Tom displays? What about the crack investigative talents of Detective Orr? What about the pure genius of dear, sweet Katie? A child prodigy if I never saw one!

If you could get past the acting, which I'll admit is practically impossible, you might find the tiniest sliver of an interesting story just busting to get out. Certainly, the producer's claim that this film is in the vein of Fargo is pure lunacy, but there are a few interesting turns in this rather dull and lifeless affair. For one, I certainly didn't see it coming that Chloe was going to kill Carl—perhaps I was already half asleep. That was about the only pleasant surprise. I guess I'd feel somewhat guilty if I didn't find anything nice to say about this pile of dung.

Then again, who needs to even try to sugarcoat this waste of celluloid? It simply is what it is, and that's one of the worst movies of all time. Pathetic acting, terrible dialogue, inept "plot" turns, and lazy direction all come so beautifully together to create the perfect candidate for the next Rocky Horror Picture Show.

"Hey little girl, you don't know me but why don't you get in this car?" "Okay."

"Hmm, I have no idea what's going on in this baffling murder case, but I think I'll go outside and pet the dog. Oh look! There's the murder weapon that poochie is conveniently digging up right in front of me!"

"I've been planning this kidnapping for six months now, and I'm just so sexy with my pencil thin mustache!"

"I'm a cop with no personality, but if I spout lines that were cliché when Car 54 was on TV, I'll look smart and cool."

"Ann, I'm going to marry you; it's inevitable. So, I figured we needed some marrying cash, so I planned this kidnapping just for you!"

This movie isn't worth the plastic it took to press it, let alone the dozens of copies that have been sent to stores everywhere, so it is with great pleasure that I can tell you that the transfers are quite horrid. It's all in delightful symmetry: bad movie = bad transfers. Presented in full frame (even for this monstrosity, that's still a very bad thing!), the video has a touch of all your favorite errors: a little grain, some dirt flecks, and a dash of shimmering. While the colors are accurate, the print is soft and lifeless (hey, just like the acting!). The audio, a 2.0 Dolby Digital mix, fares a little better, but I found it unpleasant to my ear. While every hideous word of dialogue was understandable, it sounded quite thin.

Fortunately my pain and suffering was limited to just watching this thing once, and aside from trailers for Implicated, Darkness Falls, and Panic Room, there are no bonus materials.

The Rebuttal Witnesses

I've got nothin'. I could continue to beat an already dead horse, but I think my point has been made. As hard as it was, I said my one good thing about the film earlier on. So, there's nothing left to say.

Closing Statement

Bad! Woeful! Awful! Atrocious! Implicated is a movie that you want nothing to do with…unless, of course, you enjoy having an excuse to down a twelve pack by yourself. It's a sad state of affairs when I found reading the insert for the chapter stops more enjoyable than the film itself.

The Verdict

Implicated is hereby found guilty on all counts. All parties are remanded to Acting 101 for their first lessons…ever.

Case adjourned.

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Scales of Justice

Video: 40
Audio: 70
Extras: 7
Acting: 21
Story: 60
Judgment: 32

Perp Profile

Studio: Sony
Video Formats:
• Full Frame
Audio Formats:
• Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround (English)
• English
Running Time: 95 Minutes
Release Year: 1998
MPAA Rating: Rated R
• Bad
• Thriller

Distinguishing Marks

• Trailers for Implicated, Darkness Falls, and Panic Room


• IMDb

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