At Risk (2010)

June 21, 2012 No Comments
As crime mysteries go, this one isn’t horrible. It boasts an
intriguing story and some sharp twists but unfortunately, not even all its
big-name stars can recue it; for this little known thriller, that is about all
it has going for it.

As a Boston detective, working at the beck and call of the
city’s tough D.A. is not what Win Garano (Daniel Sunjata) signed on for – and yet,
that is exactly what he got. Down South for forensic training, Win is annoyed –
to say the least, when he is summoned unceremoniously back to Boston by
district attorney Monique Lamont (Andie MacDowell) who has a case for him. She
wants Win to solve a nearly forty year old murder case involving a victim who
was in her seventies but was a fit and active woman murdered in her own home. Running
for governor, Win knows all Monique really wants is a good photo shoot opportunity
and he is not about to fall for it; she may be a woman unaccustomed to being
told “no,” but that is Win’s final answer. Still after a threat on the life of
his grandmother (Diahann Carroll) and a nagging suspicion, his instincts get
the better of him and Win agrees only to save Monique’s life that same night
following the acquittal of one of the bad guts she desperately wanted to put
Unable to head back to Tennessee – where the murder took
place – following the shooting, Win relies on his training partner Detective Sykes
(Annabeth Gish) to help him solve the cold case. While she gathers the evidence
from the original police reports, Win works on finding out who hired Monique’s
would-be killer with the determined Detective Stump (Ashley Williams) – a
specialist in forensics and a woman quite annoyed with Win.
For a made-for-television film, I was impressed with this in
some spheres and others, terribly disappointed. Overall, the film was merely
average; either the writers are inexperienced or were bored with the material.
Based on a series of novels much like Robert B. Parker’s Jesse Stone tele-films,
where those are actually sharp, good police dramas, this one seemed more intent
on squandering its endless potential. The script is a wreck from a standpoint of
pacing and introducing us to all the players. We are so confused by just who
everyone is in the set-up of the story that it makes it hard to really decipher
all the ins and outs of the movie in the opening frames. Once things get
rolling, sure it is easer to “know” the connection everyone has to the other
person but that doesn’t erase that it is poorly done and makes us question how
Win and Monique really know each other. Do they share more then a professional
past – and most importantly, how did he come to work so exclusively for her? Furthermore,
I don’t think writers knew how to create a good back-story for their characters
considering there really is none. Or perhaps they simply did not care to.
Given what they had to work with, the cast is respectable.
MacDowell is a well-known star while Sunjata has been stereotyped in this sort
of role a lot lately – One for the Money,
Gone – but then, he does the role
justice so who cares!? MacDowell is appropriately stubborn – a woman with ice
in her veins while Sunjata makes a good law officer. I don’t regret having
rented this; it is entertaining for anyone who may like the cast or is looking
for a new flick – especially if you like thrillers. The plot of the mystery is actually
not bad, it just wasn’t written well. The suspense doesn’t always build as it
should to be truly gripping but in all other respects, the story had a lot of misused potential. Without the
drive to be a really good movie, I don’t see myself watching this one again.
Its bittersweet ending makes it even less appealing while its biggest problem
was throwing away all the would-be promise it did have.
(Content concerns: Flashbacks show a woman being bludgeoned to
death [conversation reveals she was raped; later it is a talked about how it
was done]. Another woman is shot through the heart [some blood] while a man is
beaten to death. Another still threatens suicide and two more men are shot to
death [one victim dies from a train running him over off-camera]. Monique is
threatened in her own home, and is bound and gagged. Win is a supposed to be
ladies man who engages in one-time flings [there is some minor innuendo].
Profanity is infrequent but part of the dialogue. This is rated

About Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

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