Criminal Mind Review: Thriller Emulation

Mindcage – Criminal Mind is the new film by Mauro Borrelli, an Italian director who boasts a varied career on the Italian and American film scene. Borrelli in his new film is directing Martin Lawrence, Melissa Roxburgh and John Malkovich in a classic thriller of clues, misdirections and trails to follow.

It seems that Borrelli wanted to return to the big screen the genre that was in recent years somewhat set aside, perhaps to make room for other genres, perhaps because the viewer no longer has the proper attention span to follow complex films chock-full of clues and obscure puzzles. The director tries anyway and decides to use everything more classical elements genre to build your film. It’s a pity that following the instructions for making the perfect thriller isn’t enough to make a good movie straight out of a hat.

Plot Mindcage – Criminal Mind

Seeing John Malkovich with a thick mane of gray hair gives a certain impression, almost the same as seeing Martin Lawrence with a stern and impassive expression on his face for an hour and a half in a row. The first interpretsExecutor”, a serial killer serving a life sentence for the murder of six prostitutes, whom he used to catch in angelic poses with wings behind his back. Lawrence is instead a no-nonsense cop, tormented by his past, very religious and obedient. Definitely a different type of cop than the one pictured in Bad Boys.

Then there’s Detective Mary Kelly (plays Melissa Roxburgh) specialized in criminal psychology, also – obviously – tormented by a cumbersome past. Two detectives investigate a copycat case, namelyemulator serial killer. In fact, the bodies, killed in the same way as the artist, were found and left in the same positions.

So the police were left with nothing but seek help from an artist himself, hoping that, driven by pride, he would help them understand who his imitator might be. But would a psychopathic serial killer serving a life sentence be so willing to cooperate with the police? The artist will first help the detectives, then he will mislead them and make psychological games with them, until an unexpected twist occurs at the end of the film.

Thriller emulation

John Malkovich in a scene from Mindcage - Criminal Mind
John Malkovich in a scene from Mindcage – Criminal mind

Borelli’s film has everything a good thriller needs: a serial killer, a jaded cop, a slick detective, a wannabe. They may not be particularly innovative elements for the genre, but they always work well. The director is already based on the narrative thoroughly tested and on classical elements to try to create a structured and interesting film, but this is only half the battle.

Main problem mind cell that he can never find one of his dimensions: elements of suspense, for example, are often muted by verbose dialogue scenes and flashbacks, which certainly helps to improve the characterization of the characters, but at the end of the film one gets the impression that they are just fillers and that break the rhythm. Borrelli, as an emulator of his film, “imitates” other directors, adopting the clichés of the classic thrillers of the 90s, but not being able to make them his own and insert an innovative element that manages to give the film an original impulse.

Try at the finish line

Only at the end does the film try to find its own dimension, separating itself from the classics with a trick that is supposed to make the viewer open their mouth wide. However, the exact opposite happens: after all the evidence and detective research Are you disappointed with the ending?but also and above all for the turning point”supernatural“, which makes the film.

What to Save from Mindcage – Criminal Mind

One of the artist's victims
One of the artist’s victims

Most interesting item mind cell it’s religious symbolism, the centerpiece of the entire film. References to Samael, portraits of the artist and the way he arranges his victims give the film an atmospheric feel. esoteric and mysterious. Again, nothing particularly original, but these are the elements that make the movie more enjoyable, especially from a visual standpoint. Another plus is Malkovich’s interpretation which, unlike Roxburgh and Lawrence, who are not convincing as a detective, gives a good interpretation and is very believable as a serial killer.

Summing up, Mindcage – Criminal Mind this is the movie that leaving little to the viewer, isn’t particularly compelling because – aside from the dubious ending – it has no truly groundbreaking elements, just a bunch of clichés taken from classic thrillers and horror movies. However, Borrelli’s merit remains that he tried revive the genre which has been shelved in recent years. mind cell was released in Italian cinemas on June 8, 2023. Here you can find all the other movies released in theaters this month!

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