Some films are fairly easy to assign a genre. They fit the classic definition and stay within predefined boundaries.
Angel-Eyes was a bit more difficult to classify. Normally, this can add a little flavor to Angel-Eyes. Here, unfortunately, it was a bit more on the muddled side.
The story looks at a young woman, Sharon (Jennifer Lopez), a police officer in Chicago who is shown trying to comfort a man trapped in a car after his family is killed in a crash.
The story shoots one year later where we see Sharon is somewhat bitter, unable to find companionship outside her cop buddies. She has an over aggressive manner with the people she deals with and barely manages to keep herself under control as she batters the one she brings in.
We get to see another aspect of Sharon’s life, her interaction with her family. She came from a family where she had to watch helplessly as her father beat her mother and brother.
Sharon watches the pattern repeat as she is called to her brother’s house where he started being his wife.
In a converging story line we met Catch (Jim Caviezel). He is an unshaven, long coated stranger. He tries to be helpful to others although he usually is hassled for his troubles.
The lives of Sharon and Catch intersect as he prevents her from being murdered in the line of duty. They meet up again at a bar and begin to become involved.
The film explores the growing relationship between Sharon and Catch and how it affects her relationship with her family.
Jennifer Lopez is without a doubt multitalented. Her acting talents are improving with every film she does although this is a little bit down from Wedding Planner.
One thing is she is not afraid to take a little chance to get experience in a different genre. So far she has done biography, comedy, romance, action and Sci-Fi.
With Angel Eyes she can add mystery to her resume. Her Bronx roots show clearly with the arrogant attitude she provides for Sharon. She presents her character as a pretty little thing that will kick someone in the crouch as she rams him against the wall. She can move easily from fairly intense physical scenes to a very emotionally charged one with her mother played beautifully by Sonia Braga.
Many will remember Caviezel from his recent film, Interference. There he played a cop that could radio back in time to speak to his father. Here his Catch is trying to be enigmatic but comes across a little too lackadaisical.
He seems to be from the school of acting where they feel reality can be achieved by under playing the moment. This works in the first half of Angel Eyes but doesn’t show enough emotional growth for Catch as his relationship with Sharon brings him around.
At the helm of Angel Eyes is Luis Mandoki. His style is fairly straightforward. He makes excellent use of second unit shots and background. He captures the emotional moment of the actors and enhances it with the setting he provides.
The momentum of Angel Eyes maintains a good pace that can keep the audience involved. The scenes are nicely framed but most of the action takes place in the center suggesting they are preparing for full screen cable and broadcast viewing.
The Angel Eyes disc is up to contemporary standards.
The Dolby 5.1 sound field is well balanced and gives a nice workout for the rear speakers. I was impressed with how well the sound moved from speaker to speaker around the room as it followed an actor. The sub woofer was not over used but did make itself know as it booms out.
The anamorphic 1.85:1 video was typically clear and free or artifact.
There are not many extras on the disc. There was a director’s commentary that was a bit technically oriented.
In all Angel Eyes delivers a couple of hours of entertainment but Angel Eyes will never be a classic.
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