Home Movies Reviews ‘Mindcage’ (2022) Movie Review - This Ridiculous Thriller Should be Locked in a Cage

‘Mindcage’ (2022) Movie Review - This Ridiculous Thriller Should be Locked in a Cage

The movie follows two detectives, who ask a top serial killer for help after his copycat strikes

Vikas Yadav - Wed, 21 Dec 2022 17:42:04 +0000 17326 Views
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Mauro Borrelli's Mindcage is an exercise in futility. It continuously builds and destroys itself and, in the end, throws its hands in the air. I want to call it lazy, but I also think Borrelli, with writer Reggie Keyohara III, has played a joke on the audience. If Mindcage is about serial killers, we - the viewers - are the victims. By subjecting us to 1 hour and 36 minutes of incompetent filmmaking, the filmmakers sap our strength and drive us to the brink of insanity. I thought nothing could beat Blackout to become the year's worst film. I was wrong. Mindcage is equally, if not more, awful as that klutzy action movie.

It's evident that Mindcage is influenced by The Silence of the Lambs (Borrelli's film is like the copycat serial killer here). In Melissa Roxburgh's Mary Kelly, the film tries to bring out the innocence and determination of Jodie Foster's Clarice Starling. Like Clarice, Mary, too, is underestimated by her colleagues. Or shall I say colleague because only Jake Doyle (Martin Lawrence) casts a doubtful lens on Clarice? "She is not ready," Jake says about her at one point. But this attitude goes nowhere meaty and is dropped almost instantly.

If Mary is Clarice, then The Artist (John Malkovich) is the Hannibal Lecter of the story. But again, Malkovich is not as potent as Anthony Hopkins. His eyes are soft, and his smile is benign. Malkovich looks like a genial grandpa role-playing a serial killer to amuse teenage kids. He tries extra hard to come across as dubious, manipulative, and menacing, only to fail terribly. Actually, every actor in Mindcage exerts themselves to appear believable. Roxburgh strains every nerve to look earnest, and Lawrence does the same to look exasperated.

Besides Malkovich's feeble performance, what renders The Artist ineffectual is the way the camera easily invades this character's space. We effortlessly enter and exit his cell without feeling as if we have made contact with the devil himself. The movie gazes at him with the same pair of eyes it uses to stare at other characters. It doesn't matter if we are with The Artist or Mary and Jake; at the police station or psychiatric institution. The atmosphere remains the same: Emotionless. There are other inept elements. Take the chase scene between Mary and a homeless man. After running for a while, she fires the gun, he falls down, and what does she do? She takes cover instead of running toward him and making an arrest. This chase has a laughable conclusion. There are other scenes that are pointlessly inserted, like the one with a body horror magic show or the one where Mary and Jake go to a book signing event. These moments attempt to usher in a supernatural dimension, but they are shapeless.

It's no accident that a character's name is Mary. The serial killer arranges (and decorates) his victims like angels. Be ready for religious texts that turn into a source of (unintentional?) humor. Lines like, "You are preaching to a choir," or "and then along comes Mary," make you chuckle, which is sort of good news, I guess, since the movie fails in other departments, like generating tension and suspense. However, the funniest dialogues are delivered with a serious face. Look out for the scene where a police officer says that The Artist was caught due to "Damn fine detective work" and the one where Mary mentions having a Master's in Common Sense. One wonders if Mindcage was made so that the filmmakers could give a place for these one-liners to stay.

But the biggest joke in Mindcage is the climax, not in a good way. The final twist is so absurd it puts the word "absurd" to shame. It defies logic, conventions, and the very process of coherent storytelling itself. Things happen because the filmmakers could imagine them, not because they fit neatly into the narrative. While you shake your head in disbelief and stare at the screen bewildered, the movie laughs at you and insults your intelligence. Mindcage deserves to be locked in a cage and thrown into the fires of hell. In the magical world of movies, this one is Lucifer.

Final Score- [2/10]
Reviewed by - Vikas Yadav
Follow @vikasonorous on Twitter
Publisher at Midgard Times



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