The internet kills kittens. Its responsible for the downfall of society, the ever diminishing box office returns (due to naughty downloaders) and piss poor reviews of movies by people who think they know a lot about film. Hello there! The internet is a very bad thing. Or so seems to be the theme of Untraceable.
FBI agent and single parent Jennifer Marsh (Diane Lane) is the head of the cybercrime department trying to track down a serial killer who is going around torturing people to death via his website killwithme.com. The hook being the more people that log on the quicker the victim dies. Despite numorous press conferences that tell the public they are murderers if they watch they still log on in their millions.
Pitching closer to Silence of The Lambs than Saw, this isn't your typical gory torture flick. Thankfully there's no MTV style editing and the feel is more slowburn than in your face. The gore isn't in your face either which is good for a big girls blouse like me. Yet at the same time the film never really ratchets up any tension. Instead it drifts by on its gimmick until an ending that is laughably poor.
Maybe its the presence of three writers but there seems to be a clusterfuck of cliches at the end. The 'lightning storm' illuminating the 'basement' where the heroine is 'inches from death' as the police are more than 'two steps behind'. The only novel thing is the fact that her policemen buddies are watching the climax from their office via the web. But this is played so poorly it generates more chuckles than fear. Acting like an American movie audience the cops cry out and cheer as the heroine struggles to her obvious freedom. In the end Untraceable isn't unwatchable, but its certainly not one to add to your favourites.