Film

‘Solace’ Has Anthony Hopkins as a Clairvoyant Detective Helping Jeffrey Dean Morgan Catch a Serial Killer

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This paranormal cops-versus-serial-killer procedural is never not ridiculous, but it’s often entertaining as well, making room for its elite cast (Anthony Hopkins, Abbie Cornish, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Colin Farrell) to give speeches, face moral conundrums, and tell jokes in the rain, all in between the familiar pulpy police work.

They survey bizarre crime scenes, sweat out a witness’s secrets in the interrogation room, and even solve the riddles that the killer has thoughtfully typed up. If that sounds like your thing, you’ll relish it — if not, stay away.

Morgan plays the top-dog FBI detective; Cornish his trusted partner; Hopkins the old-pal clairvoyant they bring in to assist. The specifics of his character’s power set are a greater mystery than anything the screenwriters mean to be mysterious. Suffice it to say, ESP here reveals information to the detectives based only on the logic of how it would be most dramatic at any given moment.

Sometimes, Hopkins explains exactly what’s really going on with the force of cold truth; other times, he power-walks with a worried look as we’re beset with juddering flashes of possible futures: Cornish’s face covered in blood; ants on a hot dog; a wolf snarling.

Farrell is the suspect, and he tears into speeches about why in some particular cases serial killing is justified. Don’t worry, though, Hopkins has speeches to counter the nihilism. The car chase isn’t bad, and there’s actually a surprise or two.

Solace

Directed by Afonso Poyart

Lions Gate

Opens December 16, Cinema Village

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