Plot Details: This opinion reveals major details about the movie's plot.
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Dot.Kill has a reasonable premise but that's about the only thing it got right. Sadly, this movie is a total mess, and a complete waste of Armand Assante's acting ability. As he is also the producer of this film, I can definitely say, without a doubt, that he needs to stick to one side of the camera, only.
Assante plays Charlie Daines, a tough-as-nails detective. Thirty years in the business have made him as hard as they come, but he's also known as a "dinosaur" around the department. Someone who's more comfortable doing police work the old-fashioned way: writing notes in a little black book and hitting the streets to chase clues, rather than using those "new-fangled" computers.
But the latest crime wave to hit his town is totally high-tech. Someone's murdering company CEO's live, on the Internet. Yes, millions of people all over the world can watch the killer do his dirty work, from the comfort of their own homes.
Charlie is attacking the situation in his usual way, but the force has brought in a super-geek to work the case the high-tech way. Which detective's methods will ultimately bring down the killer? Guess!
Oh - to add just a bit of human drama to the story, Charlie is dying. He's in terrible pain, coughing his guts out, and hiding his true condition from everyone. Everyone, except for the ex-junkie from whom Charlie gets his morphine, the only thing keeping him sane as he suffers through his disease.
All of that sounds reasonable, doesn't it? I thought so. Thus I was completely surprised that the movie failed so miserably.
First of all, Charlie is dying. This is made known early on. We get it! But as if to remind us, constantly, of that fact, he coughs. And coughs. And coughs. Basically he hacks his way through nearly every scene. At times the hacking is so loud, it obscures the dialogue in the scene! It is so annoying to have to listen and watch.
Next is Charlie's son. He's supposed to be a "typical teenager", I guess, but I found him ridiculous. He's one of these kids who lives on the computer playing games all day long, to the exclusion of almost everything else in his life. When he stumbles onto the hacked website showing the murders, he's thrilled. How exciting - watching people die, live! And the kid is stupid enough to actually mention - to his father - just how "cool" this stuff is. Wouldn't you think that a kid raised by a hard-core detective who spends his life catching the bad guys and trying to help the good guys, would have just one ounce of sensitivity?
Speaking of sensitivity, I won't judge Charlie's decision to keep his real condition a secret from his family. It might not be how I would handle the situation, but I suppose he's trying to protect them. Still, knowing he's not going to be around much longer, I think he should have spent some real quality time with them instead of working full-time. His wife has been wanting them to take a nice vacation, it seems to me that he should do it. NOW. Don't wait even one more day. But, no, he just continues working.
All of the above would be considered minor annoyances if the story had any real depth or was an amazingly intriguing mystery. But it didn't, and it wasn't. In fact, the "reveal" of the killer was a complete let-down, seeing as how I'd pegged it a half hour before. As did my husband. And, I suspect, anyone else who watched this movie. The mystery simply was not done in a clever, subtle way where you can watch as small clues reveal themselves. Rather, it was in-your-face obvious what was really going on.
Also annoying, we didn't get to "know" the victims at all. Not even for five minutes of character development so we might come to care about them. Nope, they're just nameless random people to us. Not to say they deserve to die, but the movie would have been better if we could have gotten to know them, at least a little bit.
There was only one part of the movie I actually liked, and that was Charlie's friendship with the ex-junkie who supplies his morphine. That might not be the best basis for a friendship, but in this case it works. At least Charlie has one person he can talk to about his illness, and who, in her own way, helps him.
But other than that, this movie is a total mess, and I don't recommend it. It has a well-deserved R rating for violence, language, and drug use. Personally, I rate it A, as in "Avoid".
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Suitability For Children: Not suitable for Children of any age