Red Eye


Rachel McAdams as Lisa Reisert
Cillian Murphy as Jackson Rippner
Brian Cox as Joe Reisert
Laura Johnson as Fortyish Woman
Max Kasch as Headphone Kid
Loren Lester as Irate Passenger
Brittany Oaks as Rebecca
Jack Scalia as Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security
Jayma Mays as Cynthia

Lisa Reisert (Rachel McAdams) is on the red eye back to Miami and her job managing a fine luxury hotel there after a recent death in the family. While waiting to board she meets the excessively charming Jackson Rippner (Cillian Murphy) who tells her he will have her father (Brian Cox) killed if she doesn’t use her clout to move the Deputy Director of Homeland Security (Jack Scalia) to another room as part of an assassination attempt.

Red Eye is a fine Hitchcockian suspense-thriller and return to form for director Wes Craven (A Nightmare on Elm Street, Scream) after some of his recent less than stellar horror films.

With a running time of a mere 85 minutes, Red Eye is an exercise in story-telling efficiency. Characters are introduced quickly and only fleshed out enough to take compelling and logical places in the story. Events are never lingered over. They’re shown just as long as they need to be before the film moves on to its next beat.

As with most movies of this type the premise is slightly preposterous, and the plot turns in fairly predictable ways, but it is extremely well crafted with able help from its two engaging leads. Rachel McAdams mostly has to deal with only two emotions during the film – fear and anger – but in-between those, she manages to insert a sense of a past lying behind her feelings of the moment, and sells Lisa’s ethical conundrum fairly well. Cillian Murphy plays charismatic evil for the second time this summer, and he’s gotten quite good at it. Again, as with most movies of this particular type, he’s reduced more or less to inept evil by the end of the film, but his early scenes are so good it doesn’t matter.

While not particularly original, Red Eye is immensely entertaining and a fine example of the classic suspense-thriller.

Red Eye is rated PG-13 for some intense sequences of violence, and language.