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Secret Window (2004)
Writer and director: David Koepp

review by Eric Turowski

Johnny Depp, John Turturro, and Stephen King - you'd think you couldn't go wrong with this one. I'm giving it one star just for the big names. We have Mort Rainey (Depp) as a writer who sleeps all the time, John Shooter (Turturro), a farmer who claims Rainey stole one of Shooter's stories. Shooter wants apologies and money and so forth, plus, he's the kind of sociopath who will nail your pet to the front door as a reminder.

Rainey is under stress due to his impending divorce (I can't recall the actress who played the wife part, the character was so uninteresting). He hates his wife's boyfriend (Timothy Hutton), and thinks the boyfriend has sent Shooter. Misfortunes pile up; house set on fire, fluffy nailed to the door, blah blah blah, but, gasp, it's not Shooter who's really responsible for all the misery. It's... all a cliché, really.

This dog of a movie was directed by David Koepp; who wrote Panic Room - a film that I refuse to watch because the preposterous, stupid idea the picture is based upon makes me want to hurl. Who hired him to write (and direct) again? I'm not sure what went wrong. The acting is fine, the production slick, but watching Secret Window is like drinking diner decaf; you suffer through the flavour and in the end you don't even get a buzz. Go rent Pirates Of The Caribbean or Sleepy Hollow for Depp, Barton Fink or O Brother, Where Art Thou? for Turturro; Turk 182! or Ordinary People for Hutton - just not Secret Window.
Secret Window

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