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Suture

1 rating: 1.0
A movie directed by David Siegel

When Clay Arlington's father is murdered, his estranged half-brother Vincent becomes the most likely suspect. Eager to throw the police off his trail, Vincent invites Clay to visit him soon after the funeral, then secretly plants a bomb in the car … see full wiki

Cast: Mel Harris
Director: David Siegel
Release Date: 1993
MPAA Rating: Unrated
1 review about Suture

Suture

  • May 9, 2002
Rating:
+1
Pros: strange and bizarre, unique twist

Cons: perhaps too strange and bizarre

The Bottom Line: Why not?


Rich playboy Vincent Towers (Michael Harris) meets a brother he didn't know he had at their fathers funeral. Good old rich daddy had been murdered, and Vincent is the prime suspect, he needs to come up with some way to avoid prosecution so he invites dear brother Clay (Dennis Haysbert) to his home.

This is the plan - Vincent will fake his own murder, using Clay's body, and go on about his business leading his decadent life. After all, everyone, even they, comment on how much they look alike - almost like twins (think Arnold and DeVito in 1988's "Twins").

I have several issues with this. First, if Vincent is supposed to be dead, how will he get his slimy little paws on his coin? Second, and this is a biggie - Vincent is a slight built, narrow faced, beady eyed, thin lipped, greasy thin haired, extremely pale white man. Clay is a muscular black man. I mean no derogatory comment here, but Clay has the classic full lips, broad nose, curly hair and those beautifully lashed eyes that black men have. In addition, Clay is approximately 6" taller and 30-40 pounds heavier than Vincent.

Am I the only person that noticed this?

In a nutshell, Vincent rigs the automobile with a bomb and blows it up when Clay is driving, after placing his own personal identification in Clay's wallet. However, Clay doesn't die and ends up having surgery to repair his damaged face.

The surgeon they use is prominent in her field, Dr. Renee Descartes (Mel Harris), and she uses all manner of photographs and video films to reconstruct ‘Vincent' to his prior state. To me he still looks like Clay, except he has lost one eye in the bombing.

Ironically enough, they still put him in a lineup for a witness to identify him for the fathers murder. He, of course, is the only black man in the lineup but no one seems to think this odd. Once he removes the eyepatch, the witness thought THAT was the only difference, she identifies him immediately.

Everyone, apparently except me, sees him as that pale faced greasy haired thin Vincent, pasty white dude.

Even later, as Dr. Descartes is removing stitches from his face, she gives a very thorough description of how he looks, down to the beady eyes, Grecian nose, and thin lips.

All this while we are looking at the face of Clay, which is full, dark, broad nosed, and full lipped.

This was an extremely strange movie. It was filmed entirely in black and white, which is quite unusual today. This, of course, could have been even more intended pun than the casting was.

Vincent's apartment was starkly modern and glaringly intense. Very sterile and pristine, much like his own personality. In contrast, when Clay moves in, assuming the identity of Vincent after the bombing, it begins to take on a warmer feeling because Clay's own personality is so vibrant.

Likewise, other scenes, like the psychiatrists' office, are cold and stark as well. Large white walls covered with Rorschach ink splatters. Not framed paintings, mind you, painted murals covering the walls.

The doctor, Dr. Max Shinoda (Sab Shimona), spends most of his time quoting cliches from Freud and Shakespeare, apparently unable to form his own thought patterns. Dr. Decartes office is also starkly white with large black polka-dots on the walls.

Of course, this could have all been in moody mauve with dark purple accouterments, but since the film is black and white, so it appears as well.

This movie, by far, is no fast paced melodrama. Rather slow and drawn out at times, dreary monologue from Dr. Shinoda, and burgeoning romance between Dr. Decartes and Vincent/Clay.

The movie could and should be appreciated for the visual and physical contest taking place. You are actually drawn into the movie because of the unique representation that David Siegel and Scott McGehee, who co-wrote and directed the film, are showing you.

As darkly bizarre as this movie is, I liked it in a strange way.

Thanks,
Susi

due to the release of 24 Hours and Novocaine, every new production is a Kevin Bacon #1 or #2, just because of that darn Pruitt Taylor Vance.

Recommended:
Yes

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