2010-11-12 / Entertainment/Lifestyles

MovieScope

‘Stone’ – Take My Wife, Please
By Robert Snyder

Max Cady has come full circle. That is, actor Robert De Niro has.

In 1991’s “Cape Fear,” he played psychopathic ex-con Cady on a revenge rampage with no holds barred. Now, he’s uptight parole officer Jack Mabry of “Stone” whose sickness is all inside.

Mabry has his own Cady to contend with: convicted arsonist Gerald “Stone’ Creeson (Ed Norton). After eight years, Stone has grown weary of prison and has hatched a plan to get out. It involves his sex-pot wife Lucetta (Milla Jovovich), whom Stone convinces to seduce Jack. Seemingly not so easy, since Jack is a devout Christian, married, and professionally by-the-book.

But Lucetta has her ways. Before long, she has Jack undressed and in her bed. Stone, meanwhile, is having a spiritual transformation, something to do with hearing a buzz that will connect him to the “tuning fork” of the Universe. That happens after he witnesses a gruesome prison knife murder. Go figure.

The question is…is this all an elaborate con to twist the old parole officer mentally and physically underside down, opening the door to Stone’s freedom?

Directed by John Curran from an Angus MacLachlan (“Junebug”) script, “Stone” slips up on its sexy premise, sliding into a sad melancholic climax. Along the way are flashes of top flight acting. What else can you expect from such heavy hitters as De Niro and Norton? And Jovovich is no slouch herself.

They are reason alone to see “Stone.” But I’m afraid it is no “Cape Fear.”

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