Surveillance may involve three separate interviews about the same event, but Rashomon it most certainly is not. Ascertaining the truth through multiple narratives is certainly central to Jennifer Lynch's long-delayed follow-up to 1993's polarizing Boxing Helena. The three accounts provided, however, aren't juxtaposed or in real conflict; rather, they coalesce to form a tale about the fateful affairs that led FBI agents Anderson (Julia Ormond) and Hallaway (Bill Pullman) to a middle-of-nowhere New Mexico police station to investigate a horrific crime. That offense is initially shrouded in mystery, with details elucidated slowly through the agents' briefing and subsequent interviews – conducted simultaneously by Anderson and local cops, and monitored via closed-circuit video feeds by Hallaway – of the surviving eyewitnesses: traumatized 12-year-old Stephanie (Ryan Simpkins), defiant junkie Bobbie (Pell James) and combative officer Bennet (Kent Harper). It's the set-up for a rather routine procedural. Yet in a development that will stun no one who's seen Boxing Helena or any of her father's films, Lynch isn't interested in straightforward genre mundanity, and even during Hallaway's first appearance – his face twitchy, his speech halting, his eyes nervous and his comportment slightly askew – there's an underlying sense that this ordinary reality is somehow off-kilter, corrupted.
categories Reviews, Cinematical