Fim review: Secret in their Eyes

Let me start by spilling the beans: Secret in Their Eyes is absolutely no good. Based on the 2009 Academy Award–winning Argentine film The Secret in Their Eyes (El secreto de sus ojos) and having Juan José Campanella, the director of the rich and compelling original, onboard, this Hollywood remake is bad compared with its Spanish-language ancestor, but it is also embarrassing on its own (lack of) merits.

Playing two narrative threads off against each other — one recounting the events of the past (2002), the other the events 13 years later — has never been quite as sluggish and uninformative an endeavor as it is here. Writer-director Billy Ray has not only ditched the definite article of the original film but also done away with thrill and spectacle and bastardized the romantic element, turning it into a farce rather than the obsession the screenplay required to enrich the central character.

And the eyes in the title? Unlike the Argentine film, which firmly integrated this body part in its narrative, the American remake only opens with a very brief close-up of a face and then completely discards the idea of eyes, which in a film about surveillance and perception could have been used in any number of ways to enhance the work.

To read the full review, visit The Prague Post.

(Still of Nicole Kidman, Julia Roberts and Chiwetel Ejiofor in Secret in Their Eyes. Photo by Karen Ballard – © 2015 STX Productions, LLC. All rights reserved.)