Deception

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Rating: R

Starring:
Hugh Jackman as Wyatt Bose
Ewan McGregor as Jonathan McQuarry
Michelle Williams as S
Lisa Gay Hamilton as Detective Russo
Maggie Q as Tina
Natasha Henstridge as Simone Wilkinson
Charlotte Rampling as Wall Street Belle
Stephanie Roth Haberle as Assistant Controller
Dante Spinotti as Herr Kleiner / Mr. Moretti

Special Features:
Commentary with Director Marcel Langenegger
Exposing Deception: The Making of the Film
Club Sexy
Added Deception: Deleted Scenes
Trailers

Other Info:
Widescreen (2.40:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
Spanish and French Languages
Spanish Subtitles
Running Time: 107 Minutes

Synopsis:
The following is from the official synopsis of the film:

“An accountant is introduced to a mysterious, sex-dating club known as ‘The List’ by his lawyer friend. He becomes enthralled in this new lifestyle, but he soon becomes the prime suspect in a woman’s disappearance and a multimillion-dollar heist.”

“Deception” is rated R for sexual content, language, brief violence and some drug use.

Mini-Review:
Anybody watching this movie to see Wolverine and Obi-Wan Kenobi on the screen together are going to get quite a surprise. That is to say they’ll be surprised unless they were expecting to see a typical Hollywood drama filled with sex, money, and conspiracy. It’s a film that has been done a lot of times under a lot of different names.

As much as I love Ewan McGregor and Hugh Jackman, “Deception” was a major disppointment. First of all, it’s quite predictable. You can figure out in the first 5 minutes that Wyatt Bose is conning Jonathan McQuarry. So that ruins the first third of the film. The second third of the film features Jonathan reacting to the fact that he’s been played. The final third of the film features Jonathan ultimately turning the tables on Wyatt. I’d call that a spoiler, but you probably figured out that’s what was going to happen. Nothing innovative happens in this story.

Then there’s the “Sex Club” featured in the film. It comes across as little more than a reason for the filmmakers to throw some T&A up on the screen. It ends up being gratuitous and ultimately irrelevant to the plot. It was a weak attempt to titillate and was practically an insult to audiences.

Finally, “Deception” is pretty boring. There are long stretches where very little happens and the pacing is glacial at times. Because of this it can be tedious to watch.

On the positive side, “Deception” has a fantastic cast. I’ve already praised McGregor and Jackman. McGregor makes a good transformation from meek accoutant to someone that stands up for himself. Jackman also makes a good transformation from ‘buddy’ to villain. I like all the female actresses in the film like Maggie Q, Natasha Henstridge, and Charlotte Rampling.

Unfortunately, it seems the main reason they’re in the story is to deliver exposition and flash their assets. They could have done a lot more if the script had asked it of them. Michelle Williams and Lisa Gay Hamilton have more significant female roles, but Hamilton’s detective has little impact in the story and Williams’ love interest is little more than a tool of Wyatt.

I’m not sure who to recommend “Deception” to. If a fan of Jackman and McGregor like myself wasn’t impressed with it, I can’t imagine many other fans of theirs would enjoy it, either. Just go watch “Moulin Rouge!,” “Trainspotting,” or “X-Men” instead.

The bonus features are quite minimal. There’s a commentary, a ‘making of’ featurette, and a couple of deleted scenes. The alternate ending features a very different fate for Jackman’s character but is ultimately less satisfying than the theatrical ending. The featurette “Club Sexy” talks about the sex club featured in the film. The producers reveal they did a lot of research about it (I’m sure they did) and a sex therapist talks about how they’re real and why people do it. Funny that they don’t mention the down side of having sex with dozens of anonymous people.

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