88 Minutes

First Hit: I was slightly disappointed in this film and by Pacino’s acting.

The story is about Pacino (playing Dr. Jack Gramm) getting a threat from someone he helped convict through his expertise in forensic psychology. The threats come over his cell phone and the first call indicates he has 88 minutes left to live.

Jack is convinced that the convicted convict is behind the phone calls. The convict is convinced that it was Jack’s testimony that put him in this situation and he wants to get back at Jack by creating questions about Jack’s testimony. If he does than he may get a stay of execution and maybe a new trial.

Pacino plays Jack as pretty cool and even tempered for someone who is being phoned every 10 minutes or so telling him he is about to die. There are additional killings that mimic the imprisoned convict’s killings which bring to question whether they have the right person in jail. Sound confusing, well it gets worse, or more accurately the film gets more convoluted.

Pacino is mediocre in this subdued role. The film has more than enough people giving hints that they might be involved with this masquerade and it creates more than enough suspicion. But it’s all this suspicion and odd looks by people in the film that make it a mess. I like Alicia Witt as Kim his teacher’s aide and Amy Brenneman as his trusted assistant Shelly who does a lion share of the investigation.

Overall: This film is overly convoluted and needed to be more direct and streamlined to make it interesting.