The I Inside (2003)
Director: Roland Suso Richter
Stephen Rea/Doctor Newman
A young duder (Philippe) wakes up in a hospital with 2 years of his life shaved off of his memory. Things go from bad to worse when he inexplicably finds himself time hopping back and forth while somebody out there is trying to kill him. What the f*ck is going on? The I Inside baby…The I Inside…that’s what going on!
When you don't have a memory how can you remember who to trust?
Now and then I’ll pick up a film off my local video store shelve, usually one that I’ve I hardly heard about, watched it, totally loved it and asked the question; “How the f*ck did this not get a theatrical release”? Well “The I Inside” is one of those babies…a flick that deserves to be right up there with
, Donnie Darko and The Butterfly Effect
. Blame Dimension Films
(again) for hiding this one from us SHAME ON THEM!
The I Inside is what refined folks within the industry like to call a “mind f*ck” movie. One that presents the viewer
one reality and that then goes on to distort it, bend it and break it for our viewing pleasure. I consider myself pretty good at solving these types of films (except when it comes to the Master of Mind f*cks David Lynch of course) but will admit that The I Inside had my noggin going buck wild like an Ethiopian dropped in a Fast Food joint with an “all you can eat” pass. For at least half the film I kept being taken for loop the loops where my theories as to the mystery
were constantly debunked. It felt great to have my grey matter stimulated outside of the usual binge drinking that I do on weekdays…and I stress the word “days”, but I digress (man I hate that word but
I just keep on using it…lol).
The potent themes that surfaced along the way also made sure to make my viewing experience a more rewarding one; guilt, regret and the everlasting question of “what if’ had me hooked emotionally and cerebrally. I mean these are all things that I can relate to and that I’m sure you can to. Especially that “regret” one; got lots of those in my
The stylish visual style at hand come through hardcore as well. Not only were
the stellar locations “Gothically” milked to their fullest but the imagery on display went on to echo an LSD laced bad dream in its eerie/surreal demeanor. I was actually moved by some of the film’s shot compositions, angles and the oppressive mood put out. Last but definitely not least; a big HIGH FIVE AND HIT to actor Ryan Philippe who gave out the best performance of his career thus far (in my opinion of course) and carried the film steadily like a freaking acting champ. I respect Philippe, he had carte blanche to take the “pretty boy” highway due to his good looks but instead went on to better himself as an actor with every project (except for Anti Trust of course). The I Inside was no exception.
I do have some minor peeves with the film, but I stress the word minor and the word peeves (just for kicks). Just like most films of its ilk, tiny plot holes popped up here and there, nothing major but
it needed to be mentioned. Slight redundancy also kicked in during the second half of the flick where I was somewhat getting tired of the constant back and forth in time stuff. And…well… that was pretty much that on that in terms of boo-boos for me. All in all, The I Inside was a stimulating, though provoking and visually arresting effort that all came together in the end with maximum emotional impact. If all straight to video flicks would be this good, I’d stop going to the theatres. Discover The I Inside!
We get a messy stabbing, light blood and one nice red splat. The blood shed was seldom, consequently it hit hard when it surfaced.
In my useless opinion, Ryan Philippe (Simon) gave the performance of his career here, carrying the film effortlessly while showing a stirring vulnerability that I’ve never seen him exhibit before. AMAZING! Sarah Polley (Clair) was capable as the love interest with a twist. I never though much of Piper Perabo (Anna) as an actress (great POA though)…until now… she owned the screen in her cold, offbeat and creepy role. Stephen Rea (Doctor Newman) was solid as per usual while Robert Sean Leonard (Peter) worked within his limited screen time.
T & A
The ladies get Ryan Philippe shirtless, the rest of us get Ryan Philippe shirtless, inspiring us to hit the Gym harder ASAP and drink more coffee.
German director Roland Suso Richter blew me away with his striking imagery, infectious atmosphere, creative shots and able handle on suspense. Who is this guy and why isn’t he making more horror/thriller films in North America? Now, this is a filmmaker!
Nicholas Pike’s score mirrored the multi layered essence of the film; touching, scary and bizarre. Loved it!
There’s nothing like a good f*ck to start the day on the right stab! And there’s nothing like watching a good mind f*ck to start the day on a lighter stab. The I Inside was a tight, smart, evocative, well acted and daunting chiller that took me for a visceral ride and then some. Yes the flick had randomplot holes and played the same “time travel” card for maybe a tad too long but on the whole this one came together to tweak my brain, touch my heart and kick my ass. See it!
This was Roland Suso Richter’s first and last American feature.
The screenplay was based on the play, "Point of Death" by screenwriter Michael Cooney (Identity, Jack Frost)
Ryan Philippe is married to and has a daughter with actress Reese Whiterspoon (Fear).
Ryan Philippe has a Prod Company with partners Breckin Meyer and Seth Green.
VISIT THE OFFICIAL THE I INSIDE SITE HERE