By Dirk Sonniksen | February 28, 2014
Writer(s): Jay Alaimo, Matt Fiorello, Peter Tannenbaum (story)
Starring: Kyra Sedgwick, Vincent D’Onofrio, Rhys Coiro, Tom Sizemore, Flora Cross
Roger (Vincent D’Onofrio) works in a bank and he is not happy. Roger wants a promotion, but doesn’t have that go-get-’em attitude that his boss Pat (Rhys Coiro) expects. Roger also has a wife and two kids and that is not going well either. His wife Georgie (Kyra Sedgwick) is not happy about Roger’s station in life and feels no need to hide it from him. Meanwhile, Roger’s daughter Cynthia (Flora Cross) and son Henry (Ryan Donowho) are in the death throes of their teen years. It’s a household that is knee-deep in crisis with Roger caught in the middle. Faced with family and job woes, Roger will make decisions that could have disastrous effects on his family and his success.
Chlorine paints a world out of focus for Roger and his family. It’s a world that is quite familiar as Chlorine puts forth a story we have seen many times. It’s a film that rests on corruption and family turmoil. It’s a back and forth of poor decisions that could ultimately end badly for all involved. There’s a lot of predictable in Chlorine and even the less predictable proves tiring at times. We see adults making poor choices and teens that must figure out life on their own. It’s hard to cheer for our characters although we pity some of them.
The silver lining of Chlorine is the cast. Vincent D’Onofrio tends to make less-than-stellar movies shine a bit brighter with a pessimism that D’Onofrio does so well. And speaking of pessimism, Flora Cross delivers a ton as Roger’s daughter Cynthia and does it well. Other honorable mentions include Rhys Coiro as Roger’s drug-addled boss Pat, as well as Kyra Sedgwick as Roger’s wife, a woman well on her way to alcoholism.
Chlorine will satisfy, but just barely. It’s a film that is independent enough that audiences will be caught off guard at times, though Chlorine borrows rather heavily from past situations. As stated, the cast is what really saves Chlorine from a terrible death. It would be great to see this same cast transposed into a film with a bit more originality and edge. If independent films are to thrive it will be on the unique quality of the story and not a rehash of previous ventures.
Rating: 5 of 10