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11:14 review

11:14
15certificate 15
Running time: 129 minutes
Starring: Hilary Swank, Patrick Swayze, Rachel Leigh Cook, Shawn Hatosy, Henry Thomas, Barbara Hershey
Rating 5 out of 10
Greg Marcks' feature debut - made in 2003, but only now getting a British release - looks at one moment in time from several different angles. If you've seen 21 Grams then you might already know the idea: a single, shocking moment (normally a car crash) involves and upsets a number of people, who would otherwise have nothing to connect them.

An engaging enough opening sees Jack (Henry Thomas) drink-driving his way to an unspecified location, only to be stopped in his tracks when he knocks down a pedestrian. When a police car hauls him over, Jack flees onto the neighbouring land of Norma and Frank (Barbara Hershey and Patrick Swayze). Meanwhile, the cop who stopped Jack has his own problem: what to do with his passengers (Hilary Swank and Shawn Hatosy).

There must have been a lot of 'meanwhiles' used in the script, for as this all progresses, Marcks introduces more characters in the shape of Rachel Leigh Cook as Frank's wild daughter, and a trio of young lads out on the town to cause drunken mayhem with a prosthetic penis. But while the script opens up and attempts to display its sharpness on its sleeve, the audience is likely to grow a little weary of yet another character randomly involved in the 11:14 phenomenon.

Marcks does show some potential, and sets up a flashy and intriguing introduction. But this is a concept film that is too much in love with its own concept, and ultimately is not quite as clever or engaging as it would like to think.

The cast, a mix of established and upcoming stars, do a good job, particularly Swank as the hick shop owner who inadvertently gets involved in a hold-up. But these minor diversions along the way can't hide the fact that at times 11:14 seems like a very good student film, and one which remains a surprising choice for a UK release.

Paul Hurley

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