Red Eye

Exams are over! However, the extreme euphoria of yesteryears seems to be strangely missing. As the last paper was being collected, I did not experience the bubbling sense of mirth that characterised my O or A level exams. How strange. Perhaps I’ve been desensitized and deadened to the whole process after so many consecutive years in the academic machine of Singapore. Hah. But I did feel a gentle sense of achievement, like after a job well done. Heh.

Anyway, I always feel so aimless after major examinations are done with. It’s like suddenly your main focus and the main subject of the days and weeks of intense concentration is taken away, so you’re at a bit of a loss. But it’s okay, I think all students will agree this is a happy situation to be in. Unless you know you failed all your papers, of course. Then you’ll just be dreading the results. So, the first thing I did was to borrow a DVD – “Red Eye”, tapao some Mcdonald’s (the new Teppanyaki Chicken burger set, with seaweed fries!!!) and race home to plonk myself in front of the TV and enjoy my cinematic meal. Ah, bliss!

Which leads me to blog about the movie. Red Eye stars Rachel McAdams (yes, the Mean Girl!) and Cillian Murphy (yes, maggot-face from Batman Begins!). Initially, the casting seems weird and off-kilter, because the last time I saw these talents, one was acting as a body-swapping cross-dressing lowlife (in The Hot Chick) and the other was, well, a maggot-face. But I really enjoyed the film, and it was really enhanced because of their acting. I mean, three quarters of the film takes place on the plane, and focuses on these two characters – their conversation, interaction – and the director managed to make it so suspenseful and gripping! Cool, and btw the director was Wes Craven of Scream fame (yes, slasher flicks).
But I’m getting ahead of myself. The film revolves around the protagonist, Lisa, who boards a red-eye flight back home to Miami from her grandmother’s funeral in Texas. (Interesting sidenote: Red-eye is typically the name given to late-night or early morning inter-state flights in the US. Due to their unearthly timings, passengers are often bleary eyed and fatigued, resulting in the name, and the subsequent title of this movie). Anyway, she meets a charming stranger who turns out to be a villain attempting to threaten her father’s life to achieve his nefarious ends. Oh, and he’s her seatmate, too. Bummer!

I guess what makes it so thrilling for me is that its such a “civilian” type of thriller – almost anyone takes flights and sometimes you gotta share intensely close quarters with total strangers. What if that stranger beside you turned out to be a psychopathic killer! Scary! And even while Murphy was threatening her, she just couldn’t shout out or call for help, because her father would die. Being surrounded by all these people, and so close to others, yet not being able to get them to help you – it’s a classic “so close, yet so far”! Oh man, you gotta watch it if you haven’t. After the movie, I got a new perspective on pens, stilettos, fire extinguishers, hockey sticks and other house-hold items as personal weapons. Disturbing.. haha!


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