Review: The Little Things

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It’s the little things that make a movie work, from the script to the cinematography, the casting to the performances. It’s also the little things that send the project in the opposite direction, as is the case with the jumbled, poorly structured The Little Things.

When Deputy Sheriff Joe Deacon (Denzel Washington) heads back to his old jurisdiction on a routine assignment, he ends up teaming with young Detective Sergeant Jim Baxter (Rami Malek) to find a serial killer that has long remained out of reach. The Little Things is a procedural crime misfire, one that could have delivered a more gripping narrative had it not been such a mess. The film jumps from scene to scene rather quickly with many serving little to know purpose to justify their inclusion. You also have an element of the unknown passage of time between scenes that sows confusion as to what is happening. Washington and Malek are a mismatch of a pair, never establishing much chemistry and often mumbling their lines back and forth to one another. By the time Jared Leto is introduced as an antagonist, any excitement quickly dissipates by the odd performance he delivers, not quite hitting quirky, disturbed notes I believe he was aiming for.

Much of the blame here can be placed on the weak script that wallows in mediocrity and spends most of the movie laying a foundation upon which a satisfying resolution is never built. If you are one that doesn’t like to be left without an answer to the plot’s key points, this may not be the film for you. Fans of common sense in films will also be left disappointed as the actions that invoke the third act are laughably ridiculous. 

With a cast like this, you expect more, but The Little Things is destined to be  lost amongst the films it clearly is trying to emulate.

The Little Things hits theaters and HBO Max Friday.

Rating: 2/5

Photo from Hollywood Reporter

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