04 May 2010

The Killer Inside Me

Directed by: Michael Winterbottom
Written by: Michael Winterbottom & John Curran
Full credits at IMDb

Michael Winterbottom’s The Killer Inside Me is a faithful adaptation of Jim Thompson’s 1952 eponymous source novel—a little too faithful. It suffers from Sam Mendes’ Revolutionary Road Problem: like Richard Yates’ portrait of a Mad Men marriage’s dissolution, Thompson’s violent, sexy, and violent-sex-heavy roman noir classic isn’t prized for its plotting, tight as it may be: it’s the book’s tour-de-force inner monologue that pushes it forward (praised on the book-cover blurb by no less than Stanley Kubrick, a two-time collaborator). Without it, the pulpiness of the story just feels, well, pulpy—and, that Winterbottom slathers the film in snippets of Thompson’s first-person prose only makes matters worse. When faithfulness slips into fealty, it stops paying tribute and begins to offend the spirit of the very work it means to esteem.

Keep reading at The L Magazine

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