PR, Films and Fantasies

The Next Three Days Review

Posted on: December 8, 2010

The first film we watched @ShowFilmFirstt last Saturday was The Next Three Days. I really can’t say I was delighted to find out it would be our surprise film as the trailer left me completely blank and with a “this will be such a predictable and boring plot” feeling.

Well, it was… for the first hour or so.

The story is really simple and annoyingly unbelievable. Russell Crowe plays the perfect teacher-husband-father with the perfect wife-mother, Elizabeth Banks. However, one morning their peaceful and nearly-perfect life changes dramatically as she is arrested for murder… 3 years later the verdict is heartbrokenly severe with 20 years in jail and a ripped apart family. However, he decides he won’t leave it that way and plans the big escape.

This is where you start rolling in your chair thinking this can’t possibly work and it is actually this lack of credibility the film builds on step by step, with every new piece of the freedom plan.

The last hour is what made my pulse go up to the red zone. I really have to say that it was the first thriller in many, many years that actually managed to shake me like that (maybe the 4 hours of sleep on the previous night also made me a bit emotionally unstable…). Every second I was expecting it to fail, but somehow, that tiny piece of a belief in a happy-ending made me grab the chair and open my eyes wide.

The plan seems floppy, the husband makes many mistakes, the wife seems mental and the police incompetent. However, behind all this there is a lot more that Oscar-winning writer-director Paul Haggis is not telling us and it’s up to us to decide whether Crowe’s character is a genius, a master-planner, a very motivated guy or just all of the above with “a shit loads of luck” (see Liam Nelson’s speech on how to break out of jail…).

What I didn’t really get is the title.. I mean ok the last 3 days blabla, but I feel that the idea of “time passing” should have been a bit more emphasised under this title.

My “words” for The Next Three Days: chimerical but spine-tingling 🙂

P.S. I should definitely mention the fact that this 4/5 US production is a remake of a gorgeous 2009 French film, Pour Elle. But then I’d start again to moan and angrily destroy the Hollywood version which I have to admit, I did enjoy. The fact that I really don’t understand why this copy-ing is necessary with all the brilliant script-writers out there who can definitely produce something outstanding and creative doesn’t have anything to do with the fact that they are both good pieces of cinematography.

Voila le French trailer:


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