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Underrated Gem: 15 Minutes (2001)

Plot: A homicide detective and a fire marshal must stop a pair of murderers who commit videotaped crimes to become media darlings.

Here’s one that I hadn’t seen in quite a long time but remember liking it when it first came out. Well, I can say 15 Minutes to me was one of the more overlooked action thrillers that should be talked about more.

Not only does this boast a stellar cast that is utilized well like Robert De Niro, Edward Burns, and Kelsey Grammer, but the standouts to me were the villains played by Karel Roden and Oleg Taktarov who manage to bring the right amount of menace without making their characters too cartoonish.

What I appreciated about this, even more, was the satire this has about the media without making it feel too on the nose like how some films could.

John Herzfeld manages to subvert the cliches of these types of films through his use of frenetic camerawork particularly whenever he shoots through the POV of the killer’s camera; he also manages to build the suspense and tension in particular during the foot chase which to me is one of the better foot chases that was displayed at that time.

Overall, 15 Minutes is an entertaining action thriller that has a good cast, an interesting story, is well-directed and moves at a fairly decent pace.