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Man Apart, A (2003)

R 109 minutes

Directed by F. Gary Gray
Written by Christian Gudegast, Paul T. Scheuring

 · Vin Diesel
 · Larenz Tate
 · Timothy Olyphant
 · Geno Silva
 · Jacqueline Obradors

Review by Thom Stricklin

After a string of lighthearted, romping action hits, some say Vin Diesel needs to test himself, prove himself with a more serious film. Is A Man Apart it?




This movie is hurt by its direction and editing. Particularly during the heavier action scenes, the shots are much too kinetic, and cuts between shots are either too rapid or awkwardly slow. Add to the fact that the last few scenes are strung together via fadeouts, like the original Scarface or another film from the early '30s when editing was a crude process, and there's no wonder the film feels disjointed.

Less disappointing is the writing. The story is simple but compelling throughout the majority of the film. It too begins to unravel in the last few scenes, but I fear this is again the result of direction.




The best part of this movie? The actors. Diesel won't be winning Oscars anytime soon, but in A Man Apart he begins to show some emotion, some range. Larenz Tate compliments those emotions succinctly as Vin's partner, while Timothy Olyphant and George Sharperson add the right dashes of humor into the mix of the film.

Despite the good performances, A Man Apart isn't a terribly entertaining film. Perhaps because the story is so simple, so "done", despite empathy for the characters, there really is no feeling of need to watch every minute of the film. (I actually got up mid-film and ordered a pizza from the concessions stand.)



A Man Apart is far from being a must-see film. But if you're a fan of Diesel, or you enjoy a good cop drama, give it a try. At very least, it will be worth a rental on DVD.

283 Words Published: 7 April 2003

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