Solace tells the story of a veteran FBI detective (Morgan) and his younger ambitious partner (Cornish) who enlist the help of the reclusive, retired civilian analyst, Dr. Clancy (Hopkins) to help solve a series of bizarre murders.
When Clancy's exceptional intuitive powers, which come in the form of vivid and disturbing visions, put him on the trail of the killer (Farrell), the doctor soon realizes his gift of second sight is little match against the extraordinary powers of this elusive murderer on a mission.
When I read the blurb on the back of the DVD, I did have to have a bit of a laugh to myself. An FBI agent needing help from a "Dr" to help track down a serial killer, let's be honest it sounds very similar to 'Silence of the Lambs'. In fact Dr John Clancy is played by none other than Anthony Hopkins (who also played Dr Hannibal Lecter in the before mentioned 'Silence of the Lambs').
In 'Solace', Hopkins' character is a bit of a psychic, and this is what drives the film. The other characters are effectively at an impasse, and therefore hold very little significance in the narrative of the plot. As far as Anthony Hopkins' movies go, this is one of his weaker roles. He comes off very similar in style to his previous role as Hannibal Lecter, with a very "uncooperative unless it suits me" personality that constantly hides details from the other characters.
Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Abbie Cornish are rather forgettable. They play their roles well, but really provide no importance to the overall story line. Colin Farrell's character actually ends up with little screentime, and comes off very unhinged; none of the characters are ultimately likable.
As a thriller, the whole psychic theme works reasonably well, even though it's done in a very dumbed-down manner. It allows an extra layer of tension to preside, due to these extra abilities. You don't have to rely on logic, luck, or chance, when one has the ability to use their "intuition" to see what is coming. I found myself watching the movie, not to see any of the protagonists succeed, but to see the protagonist fail. So the viewers end up with characters that they are unable to properly empathise with. The pacing of the film is what keeps our attention going.
This film raises a lot of questions around euthanasia, and mercy killings, and the most tangible part of the film. The thing that really kept me hooked. It creates such a moral and ethical dilemma, and is a source of controversy in the real world, so it is interesting to see how other people or characters react to such ideas.
Is the film enjoyable? Yes. Anthony Hopkins gives us much of the same; and while it isn't up to the standard of some of his earlier stuff, it is still a thrill to watch. The pacing of the film keeps your attention, despite the lack of character personalities from Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Abbie Corning. Would I recommend watching it? I would. Is it a film that I will watch again and again? Probably not.
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