Kill Me Later

The title of Kill Me Later is the gimmick the story relies on for the entire movie. A bank robber captures a suicidal teller on the brink of jumping, and she promises to be his hostage as long as he agrees to kill her later. This little gimmick does not have enough weight to sustain the entire movie, yet writer/director Dana Lustig (Wedding Bell Blues) and co-writer Annette Golti Gutierrez (Wedding Bell Blues) are probably chuckling at what they probably think is a clever and amusing set up. Unfortunately, things progress in a manner clever only if the film came out decades before it did. The teller is Shawn Holloway (Selma Blair, Legally Blonde, Down to You), and she is having an unbelievably bad day. She is having an affair with her boss and learns that his wife is pregnant. This means he will never leave his wife for Shawn. Shawn's father ignores her, and even worse, her goldfish dies. She decides to end it all by jumping off the top of her bank.

Charlie Anders (Max Beesley, Glitter, It Was an Accident) is about to have a bad day. He and two friends are robbing the bank where Shawn and her boss works. Somebody sees Shawn about to jump and calls the police. The police arrive just in time to witness the robbery. Shawn flees to the roof, and Billy (Brendan Fehr, Final Destination, The Forsaken) is the only one to escape with the money. Now on the roof, Charlie and Shawn meet, and flee together. Here is where the movie begins to slide downhill into predictability. See, Charlie is really a nice guy. He has no qualms about robbing a bank, but balks when asked to kill Shawn. He will do everything he can not to kill her. The thrill of the chase is exhilarating to Shawn, who will eventually decide that life is worth living, and the two will eventually get together. The obviousness of the Lustig's set up is surprising only to Charlie and Shawn.

Kill Me Later is an exercise in style over substance, with Lustig going overboard with camera tricks and a loud soundtrack. All this flashiness feels like an attempt to cover a nearly nonexistent story that is dull when it actually is there. It tries to convince audiences that it is cool not by being cool, but by saying it is cool. Blair and Beesley do not have much chemistry together, due mostly to Blair's performance and the script. In her other work, she can play anything from a goofball to a scheming seductress, but here, she is not believable as somebody who wants to die. The other minor players in Kill Me Later are even less interesting and flat. Kill Me Later is the type of film that appears as a blip on the movie screens of America. It shows up seemingly randomly one week, then is gone by the following Friday.

Mongoose Rates It: Pretty Bad.
1 hour, 30 minutes, Rated R for some language.

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