In Theatres: 
Aug 21, 2020
Running Time: 
93 minutes

Everyone has bad days, but not everyone goes on a murderous killing spree because someone rightfully honked their horn at them. Then again, not everyone is as unstable as the character Russell Crowe plays in Unhinged. The thriller is thin on any plot or character development, but heavy on the rampage, delivering just the kind of thrills you would expect from any generic B-movie. It’s nothing we haven’t seen before and feels like a film out of the early 90s, coming off as completely unnecessary in this day and age with its shock value carnage.


Unhinged opens with Tom Cooper (Crowe) breaking into his ex-wife’s house and murdering her and her new partner before burning everything down to the ground. He’s clearly unstable, but how would Rachel (Caren Pistorius) know that when she’s behind him in traffic the next morning and honks her horn at him when he fails to drive after the light turns green. After the two exchange words, Tom demands an apology from her but she says she has nothing to apologize for, which sends Tom on a murderous rampage to show Rachel what a real bad day looks like.


The film screams entitlement from the beginning. Tom feels like he’s been slighted and is owed an apology, despite being clearly in the wrong. Even if he was in the right and it was Rachel who was wrong, that still wouldn’t give him the right to stalk, torture, and kill; all over some road rage and an apology. The most terrifying aspect of the film is the fact that this idea isn’t that far fetched. Women are killed by men all the time over what they believe they are owed. I’m actually glad that the film doesn’t try to sympathize with Crowe’s character. It flimsily references the fact that he’s divorced and is on meds, but doesn’t go into any depth beyond that. He’s a villain, plain and simple. 


What’s also ridiculous about Unhinged is the fact at how unstoppable Tom is and how inept the police are. He does everything in broad daylight, often in front of crowds of people and somehow he’s always able to casually walk away or just drive off. At one point he kills a man in a diner, stands around for a bit talking on the phone, and then walks out to his car and drives away. Remember, this is all after he killed his ex-wife and blew up her house, too. He’s even still wearing the same blood-splattered shirt and driving the same car. The plot holes are simply way too big to ignore, and makes the entire film laughable.


Ultimately, Unhinged is off its rocker just as much as Tom. It’s a chore of a movie to get through, and while there are some satisfying moments to the film, particularly when Rachel finally starts to get the upper hand, the majority of it is an exhausting trudge.

Matt Rodriguez
Review by Matt Rodriguez
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