Manhattan Night – Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)

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Overview

Finding a girl even great detectives couldn’t find creates a lot of notoriety, one which Porter Wren strays from since he feels he only got lucky. But being that there is a video circulating that his employer and a girl he just met wants, he finds himself dragged into their madness and struggles to unravel where and what’s on the video, as well as why it was made.

Rating:
Worth Seeing

Trigger Warning(s):
Suicide Attempt (Overdose) & Blood (Murder)

Characters Worth Noting

Porter Wren (Adrien Brody) | Caroline (Yvonne Strahovski) | Simon (Campbell Scott) | Hobbs (Steven Berkoff)

Main Storyline (with Commentary)

If you are having a miserable day, one in which your kid shot you or someone died, more than likely Porter Wren will show up. Not to imply he feeds off of others pain, but he does find himself to be the one people wish to tell their stories after they tell the police. One case in particular, when he found a little girl named Leanne, that is what set his world ablaze. That one girl made him famous and with it just being luck he found her, he tends to stray from making grandeur claims about his abilities as a reporter.

However, despite him downplaying his abilities in conversation, many remain impressed. In fact, Caroline, a young woman who seemingly once had big dreams of her own before marrying the accomplished, but messed up in the head, Hollywood director Simon Crowley. A man who seems to be always dancing the line between the life of the party and being one sadistic butt wipe. However, despite his ways, Caroline still loved him. Though it seems he has left her a gift which now haunts her. One which began with a bet and now involves Porter’s boss Mr. Hobbs, who, alongside Caroline, push in different ways to get Porter to do their bidding.

Questions Left Unanswered

  1. Where exactly was that camera in the elevator to catch all of Simon and Caroline’s interaction?

Review Summary

Highlights

  • This film has a neo-noir feel that snags you pretty quickly thanks to Brody’s voice and how his character handles the big bad Mr. Hobbs and the delicate femme fatale which is Caroline.
  • Simon was a loveable and complex figure. One which could go from seeming like a victim, Caroline’s poor husband, to someone who you realized was seriously mental to the point you could understand why someone would want to kill him.
  • Which was another thing done well. Not Simon’s killing, per se, but the mystery of it. Especially in terms of this ever elusive SD card which seemingly contained the video of something humiliating or incriminating.
  • Of the main players, I feel everyone got fleshed out well. Porter’s wife one could argue didn’t, outside of us being told she is a surgeon, but I feel everyone else was given a chance to seem soft and loveable, even Hobbs as he makes a vulnerable confession, and yet all of them are bastards.
  • I quite enjoyed most of Simon’s little videos with Caroline, as messed up as they were. They made you constantly shift your opinion of him for he goes from torturing Caroline to having a cute moment with his father, having a suicide attempt, to having a weird, but sort of cute, moment with Caroline in which they give each other a challenge.

Low Points

  • I found it so weird how quickly Hobbs and Porter’s relationship escalates and then de-escalates when it comes to the video Hobbs wants.
  • Norma (Linda Lavin) going from freaking out when Porter breaks into her house to talking about her dead son and opening up to Porter seemed so unreal to me. A man broke into your house, came out of your bedroom, and you stop freaking out because he pulls out a card proving he is a journalist? Really?

Questions, Comments, or Opposing Opinion?