suspense DVD and movie reviews and previews from - curled up with a good dvd
suspense DVD reviews and previews from - curled up with a good dvd
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Torso - mystery DVD / suspense DVD / true crime DVD review
TORSO Rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America rating: 3 stars
Actors: Kathleen Robertson, Victor Garber, Brenda Fricker, Callum Keith Rennie
Director: Alex Chapple   Studio: E1 Entertainment
DVD release: 22 December 2009   Runtime: 91 min.
(1 disc)
Format: Color, DVD, Widescreen, NTSC
DVD features: Aspect ratio 1.33:1, Audio tracks (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo - English, Spanish), Widescreen trailer

Widescreen trailer still - Kathleen Robertson in TORSO: THE EVELYN DICK STORYTorso, based on a bestselling book by Marjorie Freeman Campbell, tells the story of one of Canada's "trials of the century" that occurred in 1946. The story: in the woods surrounding Hamilton, Ontario, the severed torso of poor John Dick is found by two boys. The investigation soon points toward Dick's wife, Evelyn (Kathleen Robertson), the main suspect.

Evelyn is the kind of woman society seems to both passionately love and hate: young, beautiful, sexy, and with a very lurid reputation. She assumes that any straight man who comes in contact with her instantly wants to sleep with her, and she looks for opportunities to use her sexuality to her advantage. When talking to a man, she seems to use her cigarette almost as a weapon, as if to emphasize any point she tries to make.

However, her arrogance, and rather indifferent attitude toward the gruesome death of her husband, work against her when faced with Inspector Wood (Callum Keith Rennie), who becomes determined to build a case against her.

Wood's investigation soon peels back layer after layer of secrets hidden in Evelyn's past, most notably her decidedly dysfunctional relationship with her elderly parents and a dark secret in the house that was hidden even from Evelyn herself.

Because it is based on a true crime, the story occasionally has to be told in a straightforward manner. However, because I was not familiar with the crime, the plot twists in this "Black Widow" tale did surprise me at times. This made-for-TV movie also features strong performances by reliable and familiar faces such as Brenda Fricker and Victor Garber. The less familiar Robertson has to carry the movie, and she gives an excellent performance (most notable is how alluring yet dislikeable she is during most of the story, yet strangely sympathetic at the end).

Torso is not a masterpiece, but for fans of true-crime dramas (particularly "Black Widow" crimes) and courtroom dramas, it's worth a look. If you view this film, you'll probably at least feel much better about your own family.
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reviewed by Trent Daniel
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