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| 18 August 2016 | Reply

Directed by Alan Parker
Starring Kevin Spacey, Kate Winslet, Laura Linney
Shock Entertainment
1 June, 2016
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar

The Life Of David Gale DVD

Kevin Spacey plays a famous death penalty opponent in this powerful and thought provoking film which is part whodunit, part thriller and part race against the clock.

On death row for the murder of co-campaigner Constance Harraway (Laura Linney) Spacey’s David Gale agrees to discuss his innocence with reporter Bitsey Bloom (Kate Winslet) at the eleventh hour.

What unfolds is an intricate web as Spacey explains his side of the story, while Bloom runs down leads and investigates angles, all the while wondering who the gaunt fellow in the cowboy hat who is following her is. Spacey swears to Bloom that campaigning against the death sentence was his life’s purpose, but his guilt or innocence remains uncertain right up until the very end.

There’s a couple of glaring twists at the end of the film which I certainly didn’t see coming, and which I won’t reveal as the movie hangs pretty heavily on them. They leave the movie ambivalent as to whether it is anti- or pro- the death sentence, perhaps deliberately, in an attempt to stimulate discussion on the subject rather than to preach a stance, per se.

Thus, The Life Of David Gale walks a tightrope, and only succeeds by virtue of its taut direction by Alan Parker, and the excellent acting by its leads and support personnel.

Category: Movie & Theatre Reviews

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