FEATURE FILM REVIEW
Two lonely detectives investigate a series of mysterious midnight deaths.
A DARKENED STAGE AND a strangely hypnotic man giving a speech. The pitchman (Eric Roberts) knows how to motivate a crowd but it feels like there's something more, something a little sinister. But what does this speech have to do with a woman who is clearly in a position of power? What does the pitchman have to do with her? It's a little later as the body of a jumper is surrounded by police the connections start to slowly become clear. The woman who jumped to her death was that powerful woman we just witnessed, for those watching this film we know she didn't commit suicide but for the cops, it's an open and shut case. Except not everyone thinks so, and this picture found clutched by the dead woman only solidifies that something is wrong. This is how The Arrangement begins... and it doesn't let up.
AS ALL THE MAYHEM UNFOLDS, THERE'S ALWAYS THE THOUGHT THAT SOMETHING ISN'T ADDING UP
As detectives Jessica (Jennifer M Kay) and Harry (Danny Donnelly) start poking around they are led to a porn production company and wouldn't you know it, the man in the picture ends up dead as well. He's also got another picture. The Arrangement plays like a game of follow the breadcrumbs with the death of a senator (Brian Anthony Wilson) even happening as he's on TV, in front of everyone. Jake and Andrew Hunsicker really push the envelope of believability sometimes, and it works like a charm.
As all the mayhem unfolds, there's always the thought that something isn't really adding up. This is not the standard cop film, even though it seems like it is in almost every way. Even detective Harry Frick, who comes across as that shy awkward guy we all know finds a girl he becomes very fond of. Melissa (Aimee Theresa) seems like she and Harry could be really happy, but like any good detective film, her role has much more in store than you at first think. Especially when she eventually shows up in one of the photos. The Arrangement has all the moments you expect, right down to our heroes being taken off the case... but there's still more to the story. The astute may have noticed this is a thriller/horror film and yes, the horror does come into play.
YOU MAY BE THINKING, WHAT ABOUT ERIC ROBERTS'S PART IN ALL OF THIS?
As things progress you may be thinking, what about Eric Roberts part in all this? There has to be some reason he is there? Although Roberts's screentime is a lot less than I thought it would be, his part of the story is a pretty big one. All I'm at liberty to say is that The Arrangement has a lot in common with cults, or high-end clubs not accessible by the normal person. That horror element circles around him, and it's a good one even if it isn't totally original. The Arrangement is one of those movies that get you to watch the left hand, while the other is doing stuff in the blackness and it works. Quite well.
IF YOU'RE INTO SUPERNATURAL HORROR FILMS WITH A FLAIR FOR THE 90S, THE ARRANGEMENT WILL DELIVER THE GOODS
Some may be taken in by all the misdirection that goes on here, but most will suspect something a little weird is going on. The Arrangement is just that kind of movie. But the performances are pretty decent and the film is paced excellently. I kind of felt a little cheated when it came to who I thought was the top-billed cast, Eric Roberts and Britney Amber were not nearly as prominent as I thought they would be. But... that feeling quickly vanished once the film really got moving, and the actual leading cast started kicking ass in their roles. To be blunt... if you're into supernatural horror/detective films with a flair for the 1990s, The Arrangement is sure to deliver the goods. Four out of five stars.
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