The Little Things – Movie Reviews by Ry!

The Little Things – Potential Evidence: Crime of the Lost

Film is a delicate blend of storytelling and recognizable traits of life.  In driving thoughts into a different world, the audience will always try to find a through line of a genuine journey.  In this latest review, I look at a film that weaves the typical within the mystery of crime.  With a stellar cast of characters, this is a journey that shatters potential with formulaic motives.  The Little Things is a crime/thriller that beams the genre in lackluster fashion.

When a serial killer brings havoc to the City of Angels, two unlikely detectives must work together to find the one behind the murders.  The foundation (of this film) is routed in the familiarity of the genre.  Being a crime/thriller, you have a general introduction to the main characters and plot while purporting a serialized investigation of some expected result.  The first act introduces Joe Deacon (Denzel Washington), a deputy sheriff who travels to Los Angeles for evidence related to a crime back in Kent County.  Through some convenient plot devices, he meets with special detective Jim Baxter (Rami Malek), who is a lead in a big murder case.  Through predictable direction, they are paired together to solve this crime of the century.  From this point and through most of the second act, the story becomes a repetitive through line of:

Investigate crime scene > (insert character) has an introspective moment > exposition of evidence/plot revelation > Fade to Black Transition

This leads to a predictable directive, cringy one-liners, one-dimensional side characters and forced chemistry between the main characters.  All of this creates a lack of brevity, leading to lethargic acting and a thinly developed plot.  The lackluster experience turns when they bring in the suspected perpetrator, Albert Sparma (Jared Leto).  Sparma adds an intriguing ‘cat and mouse’ element that brings life to the generalized script.  As he pulls them along on false strings of hope, it stirs up a thematic presence of morality that creates a smoke screen over the truth.

As the story continues, the entanglement of the three men creates a dynamism of personal motifs.  This leads to an unraveling of psyches, creating a dynamic that provides a window of examination of what is right and wrong.  As everything comes to head, it leads into a third act that provides a questioning of answers, leveling out idealism in all three characters.  This leads to a twist of thematic appeal in the climax, ending in an epilogue that will provide a mirror of bended truths.  The Little Things drives the persistent of familiarity, causing a mixed bag of results.  If you are a fan of the actors or crime/thrillers, this might be up your alley.  It is available on HBOMax, but it might be a fun time at the theaters for the right price.

Full Score – 3 out of 5 (Theater Discount)

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