Untraceable (2008)

Rated: R for grisly violence and torture, and some language.
Length: 101 minutes
Grade: DFDD=F
Budget: $35 million
Box Office: $29 million US, $22 million Intl, $9 million DVD

Directed by: Gergory Hoblit, who previously made Fracture, Hart’s War, Frequency, Fallen, and Primal Fear.
Written by: Robert Fyvolent and Mark Brinker, which is their first effort.
Starring: Diane Lane, Billy Burke, Colin Hanks, Joseph Cross, and Richard Lewis.

An FBI cyber-crimes expert and her team try to stop a computer expert who uses a website that tortures people to death at a rate determined by how many viewers are logged in.

First, I hate gore, and this was unpleasant to watch. Second, many of the plot elements were unrealistic, such as the number of viewers involved. Third, whatever consistency the criminal had at first was destroyed when he went after the FBI itself. I watched it hoping it might prove worth watching, but it didn’t. This is not a clever whodunit, this is a horror film, and the content elements are awful, especially the violence and gruesome killing of people. I won’t even describe it to you. The movie intends itself as a social commentary on news voyeurism, but the message is simultaneously so redundant and exaggerated that it becomes unpersuasive. Besides, how can you make a movie criticizing watching violence which indulges in this very violence? There are only a couple of meaningful questions you might ask:
~Who is sicker, the villain in the movie, the fictional accomplices to his crimes, or the real-life audience who watches this movie?
~Who is responsible for violence which is done in order to be reported upon: the criminal, the media, or the viewers?
~What other activities might have similar parallels for culpability as the ones in this movie? Consider drug consumption and the current violence in Mexico, for instance.

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