I’ve been working a really hectic 10 day editing job which has consumed my life as of late, but I finally had a break in the action and decided to spend it doing what I do best: sitting down in a movie theater (it’s quite the skill). I actually haven’t been to the theater in about two weeks, as I didn’t see anything last weekend because nothing at all seemed remotely appealing.
Sooooo, let’s see what’s on the ole’ Fandango app for tonight… [makes disgusted and disappointed frown] Ewww, what is the deal with September 2014? Is this the worst month for movie releases in the history of time? God damn, did anything new even come out?
…OK, well, I have an almost addiction-like craving to go see a movie, so I’ll check out No Good Deed, I guess. Despite it apparently being #1 at the box office this week, I have no idea what it’s about, and I’ve never heard of it. I’ve seen no marketing, trailers, or commercials for it, and I didn’t even glance at the plot synopsis. The only thing I know about it is what the poster they have next to the showtime on the Fandango app looks like. And I’m going to keep it that way. I’m gonna have some fun and see if I can guess what this movie is about, based solely on this poster, and then report back afterwords and see how close I was.
[at the time of writing this prediction review, it is one hour before showtime]
Based on all the obvious clues I have from the poster’s taglines, I assume that Idris Elba (who, if the world is just, will be named Greg Deeds) pretends to have his car break down so he can get into Taraji P. Henson’s house, then he sort of creepily hits on her, and looks around her house. The “GOOD DEED” was letting him in the house. The next day she sees him driving his car past the house. She runs into him at the grocery store, and she starts to get suspicious as to why she keeps seeing this guy everywhere. Maybe one night, he forces a kiss on her and it freaks her out. If she has any kids, they will play on the park in one scene, and then when she isn’t looking, her kids will be gone. She’ll run around the park frantically until she sees Idris Elba playing with them, and she says something like “Kids, get over here!” and then “You stay away from my kids!” Oh, I bet there’s a scene where he shows up to her work and pretends to be a client, which creeps her out.
Then she’ll alert the police of his stalky-ness and the police will look into him and say something like “His record is clean, sorry ma’am.” Or conversely, a young hotshot police officer will investigate Idris Elba and will get close to finding something out, and then in the climax of the film when Idris Elba is trying to kill Taraji P. Henson in her own house, the detective will show up and shoot Idris Elba at the last second right before he’s about to kill Taraji P. Henson. But without a doubt I’d put my money on the climax of the film being a cat and mouse game inside Taraji P. Henson’s house. I almost guarantee that she will hide in a closet at some point, and he will walk by the closet, but not open it, causing Taraji P. Henson to sigh in relief, only to then burst open the closet door and they start grappling. I’m going to say she hits him over the head with a flower pot to get away from him briefly. No! Wait! I change my mind! I’m gonna go with a lamp!
This is rated PG-13, so I doubt there will be any steamy sex scenes, but if it were rated R, I would have put money on that. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if I see Idris Elba’s butt at some point. They can sneak that into a PG-13 movie, right? That poster just screams Idris Elba’s inevitable butt. I also assume that Idris Elba will be wearing a lot of tight shirts, because most buff stalkers wear tight shirts. There will probably be a scene where he sees Taraji P Henson in her underwear and it makes her vulnerable.
I’m sure there’s other characters in this movie, too, right? I bet Taraji P. Henson has a friend who she tells about Idris Elba’s creepiness, and maybe even Idris Elba follows the friend for a night because she was nosey and kills her to get her out-of-the-way. Ok, I can’t imagine this movie is any deeper than what I’ve already written here, so I’ll leave the plot at that.
I’m guessing that I’ll say this movie is too long, and that while Idris Elba plays a great creep, the dialogue and story are so terrible that no actor could possibly do well in this. I bet the cinematography is super darkly lit, and there’s probably a scene or two with night rain. Night rain would be the perfect time for Idris Elba to stand behind the tree in front of her house, which she sees out of her window. I expect the most generic music score possible.
I assume this movie will be completely devoid of humor, and the over seriousness of it will drag it down to absolute boredom. I’m really banking a lot of success in my prediction on the fact this entire movie is about Idris Elba being a creepy stalker. I bet I’ll give this film a 4.5 out of 10.
[and now I’m back from the movie, and will give my updated review, I’m basically going to spoil the entire movie, so don’t read any further if you have a burning desire to see No Good Deed. So, SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS BLAH BLAH BLAH]
Well, I was off on the main plot of the film. Damn! I thought this was going to be a long, stalker type movie about a single mom getting creeped out for a week or something, but it ended up being a film that took place over the course of just one night…
Idris Elba plays a convicted woman murderer who escapes a police transport van, who then murders his ex-fiancee because she slept with someone else while he was in prison, then he legitimately crashes his car by accident (I thought it would be pretend), and worms his way into Taraji P. Henson’s house to causes trouble with her and her kids. She does everything wrong from simply letting him in the house, to informing him that her husband went out on a golf trip for the weekend, to explaining how many children she had and where they were sleeping.
And while I did get the timeframe wrong (which made it so a hotshot cop couldn’t come save the day), I did get a lot of the details right. Elba (named Calvin; sadly not Greg Deeds) totally does some fiancée stalking early in the film, by the way, so he was definitely the stalker type. And Taraji P. Henson did have a friend who came over and got too nosey with Calvin’s identity, and she gets murdered with a shovel. At first, I thought I was way off with the tight shirt theory, because he was rocking a sick ass denim jacket for most of the beginning of the movie, so I thought he was going for scrappy/gruff, but once it gets wet (the ENTIRE movie takes place in night rain, btw), he starts popping on the tight shirts. They had deep V’s, too. And for all of you who thought I was weird for insisting they would show Idris Elba’s butt… HE TOOK HIS PANTS OFF TWICE, but they either didn’t tilt down to his butt, or it was masked in shadow. I WAS HALF RIGHT. He also sees Taraji P. Henson both in her underwear and in her birthday suit which made her feel vulnerable. The music was both generic and hilariously obvious.
And holy crap, Taraji P. Henson hit his head with everything BUT a freakin’ lamp! First it was a fire extinguisher, then a lantern, then a fireplace grill… She walked past so many lamps! HOWEVERRRRRR, Idris Elba killed his fiancée with a lamp! The rare male lamp beating. Quite a sight. There was also a scene where the kids were hiding in a closet, and Idris Elba started slowly walking past it, but then he got distracted by Taraji upstairs. I was wrong about the climax of the film only in the fact that it wasn’t a cat and mouse game at Taraji P. Henson’s house, as Idris Elba drove them to his house and they did it there. There was also totally a scene where Taraji P. Henson loses track of where everyone is, then goes upstairs to find Idris Elba playing with her daughter, to which she yells “You get away from her!” Nailed it (kind of).
One thing that made me crack up was the fantastically dumb twist at the end. At the climax of the film, they wind up at Idris Elba’s old house where he murdered his fiancée, and he goes outside to deal with something and leaves Taraji P. Henson alone with the fiancée corpse. The dead lady’s phone rings and Taraji answers it, and it’s Taraji’s husband calling the fiancée looking to hook up that night! I laughed out loud when this happened; it was so gloriously unexpected and out of nowhere. It was funny how in the second scene of the movie, when the husband simply says he’s going on a golf trip with his father all weekend, the lady sitting behind me (who talked throughout most of the movie) said “He a cheater. Oh, he a cheater. Mmmm hmmm.” And I just thought, “Dang, lady, all he said was he was going on a golf trip, I think you’re being a little overreaching in your accusation, there.” And then when the husband called the dead lady’s phone, and literally everyone in the theater let out an audible chuckle, the lady behind me went: “Told ya, he a cheater.” Kudos to you, lady behind me. I’m legitimately impressed with your ability to call out a cheating spouse.
As expected, Idris Elba was a pretty good actor in a not-so-amazing story. But he was Jason Voorheesing all over the place, teleporting from room to room, being incapable of dying. He crashed a car, got stabbed, and got hit in the head to the point of being knocked unconscious about four times. He even got shot three times at point-blank range in the chest and still took two steps forward before finally being launched out a window. At the end of the first act, they show him go into the garage (when everything was fine), and then he murders Taraji’s nosey friend, and the fear gets into Taraji. She sees Idris Elba leave the garage, so he’s been in the garage the whole time, and when she goes in the kitchen after seeing him exit the garage, the kitchen phone line has been cut and all the knives in the kitchen have been removed. When did he have time to do that? The guy is freaking wizard in the movie.
One nice thing about writing what I assumed the movie would be, was that it allowed me to really put all my expectations out on the table. While it was one of the most generic movies I’ve ever seen, it did exceed several of my expectations. I actually didn’t think it went on too long, and it had pretty good pacing. I’m not sure the movie had much of a point beyond being a thrill ride kind thing, but I was way more entertained than I thought I was going to be. I was right that it would be completely devoid of humor (I don’t remember a single joke being attempted), but it was a stupid edge-of-your-seat, mindless kind of movie that had some decent unintentional comedy. I wouldn’t suggest you pay money to see No Good Deed, but I’d say I was pretty engrossed throughout the whole thing, which is about the best compliment I can give it. I’d surprisingly actually give it about a 6 out of 10, making it another movie this year I enjoyed more than Transformers: Age of Extinction.