The Next Three Days

  • Year:2011
  • Rating:M
  • Director:Paul Haggis
  • Cast:Elizabeth Banks, Russell Crowe, Liam Neeson, Olivia Wilde
  • Release Date:February 03, 2011
  • Distributor:Paul Haggis
  • Running time:122 minutes
  • Film Worth:$14.00
  • FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

While the performances are solid and there are a handful of truly suspenseful moments, this thriller fails to rise above the formula.

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The Brennan family is having breakfast on a seemingly ordinary Pittsburgh morning. But it will soon be rudely interrupted by the police, who arrest Lara Brennan (Elizabeth Banks, Zack And Miri Make A Porno) for the murder of her boss. With blood stains on her coat and her fingerprints on the weapon, it's not looking good for Lara. Plus, there's a potential motive - she argued with her boss the evening of the murder. John Brennan (Russell Crowe) believes his wife is innocent. There's no chance of an appeal, so he takes the only viable option - he plans to break his wife out of prison.

Crowe has high wattage star power, yet he can still convincingly play an everyman. He's intense as the obsessive John Brennan but keeps the passion to a slow burn. He's never over the top; Crowe keeps it believable. Banks is well cast opposite him, while the supports are also fine with Liam Neeson as a hard-boiled crim (a kind of ‘jailbreak consultant'), and young Ty Simpkins as John and Lara's emotionally scarred son.

The Next Three Days is a thriller that doesn't rise above formula, yet for much of the film, it admirably leaves you questioning whether Lara is innocent or guilty. The first hour or so is dragged out, but it's followed by strong moments of suspense and one segment that will leave the audience collectively breathless.


A remake of the French film Anything For Her (with France's version of Crowe, Vincent Lindon and Troy's Diane Kruger in the roles of the husband and wife), The Next Three Days is atmospheric and gritty rather than slick. Perhaps more was expected, though, because of who was at the helm - Paul Haggis, who wrote and directed the exceptional Oscar-winner, Crash.

The Next Three Days is a much more straightforward affair. As much a love story as it is thriller, it's above average but not excellent.       

 

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