Dead Mans Curve

Movie Review by Michael Parker

Starring: Mathew Lillard, Michael Vartan, Randall Batinkoff, Keri Russell
Director: Dan Rosen

If this is what American college students are like these days, I’d be surprised anyone would care if they weren’t all dead. Chris, Tim and Rand are roommates desperate to make the grade and get into Harvard. But when someone discovers that a roommate’s suicide gives you a guaranteed top pass, you know it’s all going to get messy.

There’s a great advantage in having to watch this one on Video (there’s no cinema release in the UK), in that you can go and get a drink, in fact you can make your supper during the first half, and leave the vid running while you go back for the ketchup, since everything runs predictably to form. Make sure you’ve got to the coffee before the final twists, ‘cos what it lacked in plot to start with, it attempts to make up for in the last few minutes, and you’ll need that caffeine injection. Has anyone heard of pacing round here?

OTT performances from Matthew Lillard (from “Scream”) and Randall Batinkoff, and no performance at all from Michael Vartan, hardly ingratiate them to you, and the sudden switch in pace and character at the end, don’t make you care any more.

As for the rest of the plot, well if you do manage to convincingly unravel the final twists, I’ll be the first to applaud. As the College Welfare Officer says, the directorial debuts of writer/directors are best avoided if you’re at all suicidal. On second thoughts, your friends aren’t that devious are they?

2 out of 6 stars

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