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Chrysalis

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On a slow week, this gloomy-looking sci-fi looked to be a decent choice. I should've guessed from all of the European-sounding names on it, but the package left out one important detail: It was filmed in French. And yet, despite having to change over the soundtrack to an English dub, the movie still easily kept my attention.

When his police partner wife is killed, a EuroPol detective devotes all his energy to finding and stopping the master criminal responsible. But the detective isn't yet aware of what he's mixed up in, and bringing down the killer might just set him up for more suffering. Meanwhile, a notable surgeon uses a new technique to help her daughter recover from an accident. Could there be a connection?

The film is exceedingly dark and feels a lot like a cross between a Jason Statham action movie and Spielberg's Minority Report. If you're tougher than I am, you'll watch with the subtitles switched on instead of the English soundtrack; then you won't have to deal with hokey voiceovers. Just watching the actors, though, I would've guessed they performed well in their native tongue.

The story becomes disjointed near the end as mysteries unravel, but it remains interesting nonetheless. The included close-quarter fight scenes are quite amazing and help add needed action to an otherwise brooding story.

My favorite imports are dramas, so unless you are the sort who actually prefers mixing a foreign language (or dubbed) with your sci-fi/action flicks, I wouldn't recommend this film.

This video courtesy of Hollywood Video, 590 Broadway Ave., 208-342-6117.

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