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Sleuth (2007)

(C) Sony PicturesSleuth

Written by: Harold Pinter and Anthony Schaffer

Directed by Kenneth Branagh

Starring Michael Caine and Jude Law

This witty little movie is so wickedly fun, and daringly twisted, that it’s sheer joy from start to finish for anyone who misses the Agatha Christie “twist” that mystery films just don’t seem to have anymore. Michael Caine and Jude Law star in two of their most impressiv4 roles to date, and director Kenneth Branagh (Dead Again) brings back his style and sharp eye for dangerous filmmaking after a much-missed absence.

Jude Law as "Milo" (C) Sony Pictures

Michael Caine is Andre Wycke, a British crime novelist, and Jude Law is Milo Tindle, the young and handsome actor who has run off with Andrew’s wife Maggie. When Andrew invites Milo to his house for a “discussion” about their unusual situation, Milo becomes involved in Andrew’s wicked plans for revenge and humiliation. Milo himself is an excellent actor, and a great wit and he won’t let Andrew get away with his little plan without a magnificent game of wits – that will inevitably end in murder. Andrew wants Milo to pretend to steal his wife’s jewelry, which is still in the safe where she left it. Andrew will collect the insurance money, while Milo can sell the jewels and live in comfort. And they both get what they want. Milo agrees to this little plan; and agrees that they have to make it look like a break in. As soon as Milo starts following Andrew’s instructions, the game of intellects begins, and it is so much fun to watch the two men engage in what is perhaps the most stimulating war of minds put to film in quite a long while.

Michael Caine as "Andrew" and Jude Law as "Milo", (C) Sony Pictures

A remake of the 1972 film, adapted from the play by Anthony Schaffer (this version of the screenplay is by Harold Pinter), which starred Michael Caine in the Milo Tindle part originally, Sleuth is full of witticisms, grating and menacing semantic challenges, and blunt emotional drama. Michael Caine is gorgeously sinister and sympathetic, while Jude Law gives a strikingly real and powerful performance. The dramatic set design and lighting add to the beauty of the movie, and are a pleasure any film novice will notice and appreciate.

Sleuth opens Friday, October 12th, and really validates the old saying “It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt…”

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