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Cleaner (2007)

Director(s): Renny Harlin

Theatrical Release: 2007

Cast: Samuel L. Jackson, Ed Harris, Eva Mendes, Luis Guzman, Robert Forster, Maggie Lawson

Genre(s): Thriller, crime, Drama, Dean's List

Countries: USA

Location in store: Hollywood > Thriller

(3 / 3)
Ant Rating
Running Time: 89m.

Samuel L. Jackson stars as Tom Carver, an ex-cop who's turned to cleaning up biological waste, such as the messy remains of a violent crime scene. A typical call takes him to an upperclass home, where a white leather sofa is spattered with gruesome viscera. After the living room has been rendered antiseptic, Tom discovers that the murder may be connected to a high-profile police corruption case... a case that may implicate him as well. After establishing the promising premise, Cleaner requires that you overlook a lot of implausible plot turns--but if you can suspend your disbelief, there's a lot to enjoy. Jackson gives a typically skilled performance; like Gene Hackman, Jackson is an actor who never fails to deliver a solid, engaging, thoughtful performance that lifts everything around him. Ed Harris also provides his craggy charisma and Luis Guzman (The Limey) continues to be an indispensable support player. Eva Mendes, on the other hand, comes across a bit flat, though she is as lovely to look at as ever. Director Renny Harlin (Die Hard 2, The Long Kiss Goodnight) oversells the story--this twisty tale of corruption and overheated love would probably play better with the lean, cool, minimal production values of film noir, rather than Harlin's constantly prowling camera--but he definitely infuses the movie with bubbling energy. All in all, not a great film, but a decent diversion for crime thriller fans. (Bret Fetzer)

Member Reviews

Character driven thriller by RW - June 3, 2008
Good performances by Jackson and Harris elevate a serviceable script. Enjoyable thriller, with a few problems that keep it from being great, but plenty of merits to keep it above average.