Fatale: Thriller Misses The Mark

Hilary Swank and Michael Ealy in Fatale. Photo credit: Scott Everett White.

Fatale, the new thriller from Deon Taylor, misses the mark in one of the final theatrical releases to ring out the dumpster fire.

Sports agent Derrick (Michael Ealy) may be successful in life but he’s not so successful in vetting his one-night stands.  Seriously.  How can someone be so foolish enough?  I swear people vet their Facebook friend requests more than they vet their one-night stands.  Seriously.  One thing that is certain about one-night stands: unlike social media, they are not bots.  Though some people have an online persona that they don’t have in real life but I’ll stop myself before going off on a tangent.  Can you tell I didn’t like this film?!?  Because I didn’t like this film!

Back to Derrick, he discovers he had a one-night stand with none other than police detective Val (Hilary Swank).  Only Val isn’t so forthcoming about her job and Derrick is also cheating on his wife, Tracie (Damaris Lewis).  Oh, he also lives in an expensive Beverly Hills neighborhood but thinks Tracie is cheating on him.  Is this his way of getting back at her?  Next thing you know, he’s involved in whatever the hell she’s investigating.  At which point, I’m just waiting for Dennis Quaid to come back in hopes of reclaiming his property.  Oh wait, wrong film but at least that one was so bad it’s hysterical!  This one never quite reaches that level.  Before he knows it, he’s playing her games.  Well, games might not be the right words but his life and everything he knows–until this point–is on the line.

The team that brought you The Intruder reteams for another mess of a film.  It’s the type of movie that will put you to sleep.  The film’s sound mix will give you an idea of what’s happening during the final half hour if you do happen to close your eyes.  Don’t worry, I did watch the parts I missed just to confirm that yes, this is a bad film.  Honestly, this is the type of film that works better on VOD.  Although I’d recommend waiting until it’s on a streaming service.  You shouldn’t have to pay anybody if you want to take a nap!  When the embargo is the morning of opening day, it is not a good sign.  There were early screenings on Thursday night but reviews could not run until today.  You do not embargo good films until opening day–it is unheard of!

DIRECTOR:  Deon Taylor
SCREENWRITER:  David Loughery
CAST:  Hilary Swank, Michael Ealy, Mike Colter, Danny Pino, and Tyrin Turner

Lionsgate opens Fatale in theaters on December 18, 2020. Grade: 2/5

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.