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OUT OF TIME

A Florida police chief is beginning to look a lot like a suspect in the horrendous double homicide he’s been investigating.

CAST: Denzel Washington, Sanaa Lathan, Dean Cain, Eva Mendes, Alex Carter, John Billingsley

DIRECTOR: Carl Franklin


"If you've seen Franklin and Washington's last collaboration, the marvelously languorous Walter Mosley adaptation ‘Devil in a Blue Dress’ (1995), you might be prepared for a careful, deliberate whodunit in which vibe trumps the mechanics of the plot. That's the prevailing tone here: low and slow…You would hardly guess that 45 or so minutes into ‘Out of Time’ the tempo is going to change—and that the fun will be watching the unflappable star as he breathlessly dashes from place to place, trying to catch up with the bad guys and elude the cops. It's a great ride…I reckon 90 of the movie's 106 minutes are thriller heaven. The windup, alas, isn't in the same league." --David Edelstein, Slate

"Director Carl Franklin is frankly trying to manipulate the audience beyond the edge of plausibility. The early scenes seem to follow more or less possibly, but by the time Matt is hanging from a hotel balcony, or concealing incriminating telephone records, we care more about the plot than the characters; suspension of disbelief, always necessary in a thriller, is required here in wholesale quantities." --Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

"Strong performances by Washington, Sanaa Lathan as the mistress and Eva Mendes as the wife, as well as taut direction by Carl Franklin help put over the more incredible plot twists. Some require major suspension of disbelief in this pulpy, uncredited reworking of ‘The Big Clock’ and its better-known remake, ‘No Way Out’…‘Out of Time’ wouldn't work without Washington's effortless movie-star presence. Despite the movie's absurdly tame PG-13 rating, he has a sizzling, standing-up sex scene with Lathan." --Lou Lumenick, The New York Post

"It's a twisty, hell-for-leather crime thriller, and director Carl Franklin gives it all the slick, modern trimmings. But it's a movie that also takes one of the classic noir plots -- a man investigating a murder in which all the clues point to himself -- and gives it a crisp, racy makeover… ‘Out of Time’ doesn't really make sense, but it's fun to watch." --Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune

"…a crime thriller that is strong on sultry atmosphere—you practically break into a sweat watching it—but weak on believability. Hollywood used to know how to craft these ‘Double Indemnity’–style plots in its sleep, but the knack is gone: The pileup of implausibilities in this movie is enough to tax the most ardent fantasist." --Peter Rainer, New York Magazine

"Maybe ‘Out of Time’ isn't pitch perfect… But with Denzel Washington playing a desperate guy who's half a moment away from the biggest trouble in his life, the movie's a bleakly comic, palm-sweaty hoot…Yes, this is Film Noir 101 with a little ‘No Way Out’ on the side, but director Carl Franklin and first-time writer David Collard give this backwater tall tale an exciting briskness and wicked sense of humor…You're cackling through the movie as your anxiety mounts, right until the last moment." --Desson Howe, The Washington Post

"Although it is briskly directed and enjoyably stylized, the film is shallow…Mr. Franklin used his talents for dramatizing the driving force of greed far more effectively in ‘One False Move’ and his intensely satisfying adaptation of Walter Mosley's ‘Devil in a Blue Dress,’ his first collaboration with Mr. Washington." --Elvis Mitchell, The New York Times

"… a highly felicitous comedy of infidelities and busted-up romances—a cautionary tale for guys who can't help but think with the wrong head. As small-town chief-of-police Matt Whitlock, Denzel Washington is refreshingly cast as something of a rube—a hometown boy who's just fine for handling kittens up trees, but who probably owes his job (like everything else) more to his sex appeal than to any real investigative prowess." --Scott Foundas, The Village Voice

"…a solid thriller full of surprises…Movies like this are popcorn fun, partly because they are such a balancing act of credulity and timing…‘Out of Time’ has typical plot points -- near misses, double-crosses and the like. But the tension of Matt having to work alongside his wife without being able to trust her provides the movie's real electricity, sexual and otherwise." --Jami Bernard, The New York Daily News

"‘Out of Time’ is a shrewd thriller that takes the time-honored plot about an innocent man wrongfully accused and gives it a film-noir twist. Here, our hero is not exactly innocent…Director Carl Franklin and first-time screenwriter Dave Collard make use of every opportunity to crank up the heat and turn up the emotion, so that even before the thriller plot has kicked into gear, the audience is in the movie's grip." --Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle

"Until that sugar coating at the end, ‘Out of Time’ is clever, believable and gripping, and seems to be headed to a wondrous, bad place as it carefully modulates classic '40s themes: innocent guy set up brilliantly by a femme fatale, the universe closing in as options run out, the despair of the hero, the cleverness of those he's hunting and those who are hunting him, and, finally, a milieu of atmospheric small-town sleaze…Washington makes a wonderful chump who turns out to be smarter than the folks who set him up think…all in all, ‘Out of Time’ is on time in its trip to the dark city of treachery and bad girls." --Stephen Hunter, The Washington Post

"‘Out of Time’ benefits from high-energy directing by Mr. Franklin, whose earlier thrillers include ‘One False Move’ and ‘Devil in a Blue Dress,’ and from Washington's confident, amiable acting…The film indulges too many clichés for its own good, though…It's a serviceable picture, but hardly a top-notch vehicle for Washington's remarkable gifts." --David Sterritt, The Christian Science Monitor