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DVD Review: Removal

Title: Removal

Directed by: Nick Simon

Starring: Billy Burke, Mark Kelly, Oz Perkins, Kelly Brook, Emma Caufield and Elliott Gould

Running time: 91 minutes, Rated R

Cole was released from a long stint at a mental institution after witnessing his friend Eric’s murder/suicide. Though his wife and child have left him, as long as he is medicated, he is ready to get his life back. A year later, Cole has been working for a carpet cleaning service. He has just finished working a double shift and is ready to begin the weekend. His boss then calls him with a last minute assignment – an “all-nighter.” Being over worked and over tired, he reluctantly accepts the call; however his hallucinations begin to sprout and wreak havoc on his mind when dealing with the smug rich client Henry, who alludes that he just murdered his wife and child…or is Cole just hearing things?

To get right to the point, this movie is more or less a mash-up of Fight Club and Sunshine Cleaning, but with a dry, morose cast. The story itself wasn’t bad, in fact I found it to be almost Hitchcockian and intriguing, but the actors seemed so out of it and unenthusiastic about being in the picture. Elliot Gould, who is in the film for less than 3 minutes, is very stiff, and he almost seems like he’s reading cue cards. It’s not worth shelling out bucks for a name if they’re just going to phone it in.

The special features include a deleted scene, an alternate opening, trailer and gag reel.

There’s not much I can say about the film without giving it completely away, however by making a Fight Club reference, you can probably take a wild guess. The film really doesn’t start picking up until the last 30 minutes, and by then I felt a little cheated for investing so much time into the movie only to have it end so abruptly, then be forced to rely on my imagination as to how it probably ended. Some people have no imagination, so they might be a little disappointed or lost. Being this is director Nick Simon’s first feature, I’ll give him a pass; some have not been so lucky.

Total Rating: C

Reviewed by: JM Willis

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