17 February 2015

Movie Review: "The Identical"

Rated: PG for thematic material and smoking
Starring: Blake Rayne, Ashley Judd, and Seth Green
Released: September 5, 2014 (theaters) / January 13, 2015 (DVD)
Synopsis: During the Great Depression, the Hemsleys welcome twin boys...only to realize that, since money is tight, they can only support one.  They decide to let a preacher (Ray Liotta) and his wife (Ashley Judd) adopt Ryan, while Drexel remains with his parents.  As the years go by, the twins (both played by Blake Rayne) are living very different lives.  Drexel is raking in the millions as a performer, while Ryan struggles to find his calling, especially since his minister father wants him to follow in his footsteps.  Ryan eventually gets a gig as a Drexel impersonator known as "The Identical," but has no idea of their true connection.  Will they find each other before it's too late?

The Good: For a Christian movie, the production values are great.  It helps that this film has some mainstream talent; not only is Ashley Judd one of the main actresses, but the end credits even mentioned that veteran voice actress Tara Strong (Ben 10) had a cameo.  The performances were great, and even the closing credits started off with a wonderful song.  Even the sets did an amazing job of taking you back in time.  Unfortunately...

The Bad: All that is ruined by the poor story.  Maybe I'm being too critical, but, for me to enjoy a film, it has to have a great narrative, even if it's a tried-and-true formula.  This movie just goes on for too long, and doesn't really reach a pleasing conclusion.  By the time it was over, I didn't really care about the characters that much; in fact, I struggled to finish it.

Content Concerns:
  • Sex: Kissing. 4/5
  • Nudity: Occasional bare midriffs and cleavage. 4/5
  • Language: One h-word, and one misuse of God's name. 4/5
  • Violence: A young man is knocked down by a police officer.  Someone dies as a result of a plane crash (not shown). 4/5
  • Drugs: Alcohol is consumed fairly often; smoking is also present, though less so. 3/5
  • Frightening/Intense Scenes: Emotional intensity abounds.  An elderly man is shown having a heart attack. (Spoiler: He recovers.) 2/5
Conclusion: What a disappointment! I was rather excited to purchase this using my K-Mart reward points, but it turned out to be a serious dud! Elvis fanatics may feel differently, but, I really did not enjoy this one.  It's a shame, because, with such great talent and wonderful production values, this could have been a much better movie.

Score: 2/5

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