(Spain/US - 2015)
Written and directed by Billy Ray. Cast: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nicole Kidman, Julia Roberts, Dean Norris, Alfred Molina, Michael Kelly, Joe Cole, Zoe Graham, Don Harvey, Amir Malaklou, Niko Nicotera, Patrick Davis, Ross Partridge. (PG-13, 111 mins)
Juan Jose Campanella's 2009 Argentine thriller THE SECRET IN THEIR EYES dealt with the reopening of a 25-year-old murder case that was hindered in its initial stages by the tumultuous political upheaval of 1970s Argentina. It won the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar and is the source for the THE-less English-language remake SECRET IN THE EYES, written and directed by Billy Ray, who previously helmed SHATTERED GLASS and BREACH and whose CAPTAIN PHILLIPS screenplay earned him an Oscar nomination. SECRET '15 makes some major changes to the story (though Ray does restage the original's much-ballyhooed soccer stadium zoom at a Dodgers game) and works fine for a good chunk of the way. But then it starts collapsing under the weight of too many contrivances and coincidences, and a third-act twist that's just too ludicrous to accept, though it does give us a brief preview of how an Oscar-winning, A-list actress might handle a 1960s-inspired Bette Davis "horror hag" renaissance in another 25 or so years.