Hypnotic Review: Ben Affleck Plays Mind Games In Robert Rodriguez’s Nolan Knock-Off – /Film

This is all very silly, but there is nothing wrong with it! In fact, “Hypnotic” would be much better if it learned to lean into that nonsense. Instead, Rodríguez keeps everything very dour, and while he injects a bit of life here and there through action beats (the bank robbery scene is pretty well staged, as are several chase sequences), the filmmaker never really manages to for “Hypnotic” to work.

What it does do, however, is add more than a few Nolan-esque touches. Rourke likes to brandish a Polaroid just like Guy Pearce in “Memento,” and since the film is about perception and reality, Rodriguez creates some shots that borrow liberally from Nolan’s “Inception.” Buildings that are revealed to not actually be there collapse, and there are multiple occasions where Affleck’s character looks up only to see upside down roads in the sky, you know, like in “Inception.”

If “Hypnotic” would just stop being so serious and start having something fun with all this, the defects would be less noticeable. In fact, part of what makes Fitchner’s performance so memorable here is that he seems to be the only actor having fun with the material. Every time “Hypnotic” sidesteps it so Rourke and Diana can share duller, more exposition-laden scenes, the movie sinks. And that flab only gets worse in the film’s final act, where the script hits us over the head repeatedly as he tries to explain everything that happened. The thing is, we don’t need the explanation. We understand. It just wasn’t very interesting to begin with.

/Movie rating: 5 out of 10

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