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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Thriller in every sense of the word
on 6 April 2003
'Frailty' didn't do much at the UK box office on it's release - maybe because it was up against M. Night Shyamalan's much-anticipated (and slightly over-rated) 'Signs'. A bit of a shame as this is an excellent and gripping thriller from start to finish. It deals with the FBI's search for a serial killer known as 'God's Hand'. When Fenton Meeks (McConaughey) walks into the FBI's offices claiming he knows the identity of the killer his claims are initially met with scepticism. He relates the story of his motherless family's transformation from an everyday happy unit into one of serial murder. This change is caused when Fenton and his brother Adam are awoken during the night by their father (Paxton) who claims he has been given a mission from God. The mission is to kill demons who are masquerading as human beings. Fenton believes his father has gone raving mad but Adam believes him and a trail of death ensues.
'Frailty' is Bill Paxton's directorial debut and I look forward to seeing what he does next as this is a cracking film that nearly always keeps you guessing. The acting is mostly top-notch with Paxton delivering a fairly low-key performance as the father and McConaughey goes into sombre mode as Fenton. It is also worth noting that the child performances are very good too. There are one or two formulaic moments when certain plot elements and some of the characterisation seem a little obvious but on the whole it all builds up really well toward the final twist. I enjoyed 'Frailty' a lot more than 'Signs' and it seems baffling to me how it didn't do a lot better at the cinema. Still, that's what a bit of hype can do I suppose.