Movie Review for I Know Who Killed Me (2007)


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Review #491 of 365
Movie Review of I Know Who Killed Me (2007) [R] 105 minutes
WIP™ Scale: $11.75
Where Viewed: United Artists Denver Pavilions Stadium 15, Denver, CO
When 1st Seen: 30 July 2007
Time: 5:00 pm
Film's Official WebsiteFilm's Trailer
DVD Release Date: 27 November 2008 (click date to purchase or pre-order)

Soundtrack: Download now from Joel McNeely - I Know Who Killed Me

Directed by: Chris Sivertson (The Best of Robbers)
Written by: Jeff Hammond (debut)

Featured Cast (Where You Might Remember Him/Her From):
Lindsay Lohan (Georgia Rule) • Neal McDonough (Flags of Our Fathers) • Julia Ormond (Inland Empire) • Brian Geraghty (We Are Marshall) • Garcelle Beauvais ("Eyes") • Spencer Garrett (Bobby) • Thomas Tofel (War of the Angels)


Click for 'Review Lite' [a 150-word or less review of this film]
To read the spoiler points for I Know Who Killed Me, click here.
If you don't go into I Know Who Killed Me with high expectations, you might actually come out sort of surprised at how much you might like this film after all. I don't write that in a mean way. The film's opening was marred again by another headline gripping story of the personal life struggles the film's biggest star, Lindsay Lohan, encountered, which, unfortunately this stuff is not helping her films. Which, in this case, especially, is too bad. While the film has some critically ridiculous parts, it also has some merit. The ridiculous parts will have to be addressed in the spoiler points, however, so as not to ruin the plot.

The plot really is pretty clever. It all begins with a junior college student reading a short story in her writing class about a young woman who is unfulfilled in her life, incomplete, and longing for something that's missing. Clearly, Aubrey Fleming (Lindsay Lohan) has a flair for both dramatic writing and reading as the class seems captivated at her every word. The town where she lives, however, is partially under alert with an early curfew for anyone under 21 due to a suspected serial killer—nobody's admitting that—on the prowl for young women. Agents Jusie Bascome (Garcelle Beauvais) and Phil Lazarus (Spencer Garrett) are on the job trying to solve the string of murders where the killer drastically dismembers his victims before dumping them to die. Foreshadowing, of course, alerts everyone except Aubrey that she's next. Don't be fooled though, this is not just the typical serial killer film, though it surely starts off looking like one. Aubrey has doting parents, Daniel (Neal McDonough) and Susan (Julia Ormond) and a football player boyfriend, Jerrod (Brian Geraghty) who, for some reason, feels that a blue rose will win him a night with Aubrey.


"… falls into the 'guilty pleasure' category,…an unexpectedly good movie--scary, intriguing, and sassy."
After the football game, Aubrey and her friends are supposed to meet up with Jerrod in front of the movie theatre. Unfortunately, she never shows up. An investigation proves futile, until, out of the blue, she is found on the side of the road now missing her right leg below the knew and her right arm below the elbow. In the hospital, the doctors to everything they can to preserve as much of her limbs as possible. She has lost a lot of blood, but the hearty spirit in her keeps her alive. Only, when she comes to, she professes that she is not Aubrey at all, she is some young woman named Dakota Moss. Clearly, she's delusional. Even a first year psychology student would figure out that her mind created this split personality to protect herself from the horrors that have just happened to her. And, later, a short story in progress on her computer will reveal her knowledge of this character, Dakota Moss before she disappeared for weeks. Despite the FBI-hired psychologist's findings of no inconsistencies with her testimony as would be common with either a person who was faking this or whose mind created the fractured personalities, everyone, including her parents are convinced that she'll return to her former self in time. All of this is, of course, devastating for her parents, especially her mother, as they've gotten most of their daughter back, but she refuses to acknowledge what is so obvious to them. She won't admit she's Aubrey. She won't hug them or accept them as her parents. In one rather racy scene, however, she makes some progress in convincing Jerrod as the formerly slow-going Aubrey, is suddenly hot to have him in the worst way. Flashbacks in Dakota's mind reveal a back story that her mother died of a drug overdose leaving her to fend for herself which she did by becoming a stripper in a strip club. One evening while dancing in the club, she suddenly started bleeding in her glove. When she removed the glove back in the dressing room, her middle finger had been detached and she was bleeding profusely from the wound. She remembers this vividly, but she feels she cannot tell anyone that somehow her finger got caught off. And, even if she did tell them, it would have just been more fuel for their belief in her split personality.

While this is no M. Night Shyamalan film, it's a Chris Sivertson film using a Jeff Hammond screenplay, there is a very good, maybe not entirely unexpected twist that explains what's really been going on all along. The title alludes, anyway, to Aubrey somehow figuring out who killed her. The problem with the title is that she's not dead. So, nobody killed her. Or did they? Is this something supernatural? Is she a ghost? Is this another case of astral projection from a dying body like was saw in The Invisible? Well, you'll just have to see the film or read the spoiler points to find out. The fact of the matter is that the twist is masterful, and there are some aspects that make the film feel like M. Night Shyamalan might have had a hand in thinking this up. The recurrence of that blue color throughout the film giving subtle visual clues as to what is going on—it was red in The Sixth Sense. It's obvious that the blue has something to do with things, but what? The fact that you never know until the end whom Dakota/Aubrey can really trust also plays out well. Until the climax, that is. Here's where the film does border on being a tad preposterous and illogical. It's disappointing because it didn't have to be this way, some writing techniques could have been employed to explain why police weren't called in other than the cheesy line, "There just isn't time." Still, it does make for a harrowing and frustrating chase to the finish. The film is sassy and scary, a rare combination, with dual performances by Linday Lohan that make her roles in The Parent Trap look downright child's play. Say what you will about her and her personal life, but she did a pretty good and convincing job with this/these role(s).

I was prepared to really hate this movie, and to write a deliciously terrible review. The truth of the matter is that it's actually an unexpectedly good movie--scary, intriguing, and sassy. Part of it falls into the 'guilty pleasure' category, but honestly there's a lot more to this story than a lot of the other stuff thrown out at viewers as murder mystery movies over the past few years. And, Tomas Tofel, plays one creepy dude.

I Know Who Killed Me is not quite in the same league as Perfect Stranger or Mr. Brooks, but it's not that far off if you can overlook the events that lead up to the to the ending and the fact that certain characters seem to disappear as if they were never there, oh, and that the police providing clamp down surveillance protection also suddenly disappear when they might be most needed. That's why this turned out to be more of an $11.75 W.I.P. than a $12.50 or $13.


Still Photo Gallery for I Know Who Killed Me (2007)


Lindsay Lohan as Aubrey Fleming

Lindsay Lohan as Dakota Moss

Jerrod (Brian Geraghty) gives Aubrey
(Lindsay Lohan) a signature blue rose.

Neal McDonough as Daniel Fleming

Julia Ormond as Susan Fleming



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Other Projects Featuring I Know Who Killed Me (2007)
Cast Members
Lindsay LohanNeal McDonoughJulia Ormond
Brian GeraghtyGarcelle BeauvaisSpencer Garrett
Thomas Tofel
Director
Chris Sivertson
Writer
Jeff Hammond
Review-lite I Know Who Killed Me (2007) [max of 150 words]
I know what you're thinking. You're wondering why I gave I Know Who Killed Me a pretty good review? Well, all I know is that it's a pretty good movie—minus parts of the ending that are mind numbingly idiotic. I'd say these were accidental—sort of like opening night jitters. For all we know, maybe the writer didn't write it this way at all, and some studio exec made this decision! Seriously, though, Lindsay Lohan, despite all the headlines, gives a very unique and entertaining performance. The supporting cast, minus Julia Ormond was probably not up to the caliber of the potential of the film. Even so, saying it was terrible or that it made no sense is bush league. There's far more going on in and under the surface of this film than the vast majority of the murder mystery films that have been dished up the past few years.

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2 comments:

Erik said...

I heard Perfect Stranger was pretty good. You compared this one to that and said Perfect Stranger was in another league. Interesting...

Erik said...

I do want to see the movie. Often these movies that are just laughed at end up being at least moderately entertaining. Thrillers can pull off being not-so-good, as long as they keep going at a fast enough pace.