My History With the Film:
Back in 1995/1996, Alicia Silverstone was the hottest actress around. She was my pre-teen crush and I set out to watch every movie she made. This led me to True Crime, a direct-to-video thriller co-starring Kevin Dillon. I remember enjoying the film at the time and one scene made quite the impact on me. I’ve been wanting to revisit this film for well over a decade and I finally found it streaming on Amazon Prime and made it so.
What The Film Is About (Non-Spoiler):
Mary, a precocious high school senior, longs to be a cop. When a classmate dies and the case remains unsolved, Mary becomes obsessed and gets involved in the investigation.
What I Liked About It:
-Every once in a while a movie will have a scene that will stick with you for the rest of your life. When I was twelve and watched this movie for the first time, there is a scene that involves drinking bleach, which was traumatizing. Watching it now, it’s pretty tame, but the idea of drinking bleach always stuck with me.
-Alicia Silverstone (Mary) does a great job of playing the “pretty” ugly girl. She’s got glasses, low self-esteem, and is nerdy, which is the opposite of her role in Clueless.
-I’m always a fan of Marla Sokoloff (Vicki) and despite her getting just a minute or two of screen time it was nice to see.
-Kevin Dillon (Tony) does a fantastic job of bouncing between good and bad, based on Mary’s interpretation of events. He’s both chilling and charming, which was very common in these 90’s straight to video thrillers. Still, his performance is a memorable one even if it becomes a little over the top towards the end.
What I Didn’t Like About It:
-There is a sexual side plot, well… more like two minutes of scenes, that is uncomfortable and unnecessary.
-The movie drags and you can easily see why it wasn’t a huge theatrical release. It’s very predictable and very paint-by-numbers. The film could easily feel at home on the Lifetime channel.
-Was one of three films released in 1995 (it wasn’t released on video until 1996) the other two: Clueless and The Babysitter.
True Crime feels like almost all of the direct-to-video thrillers of the mid-90’s minus the nudity. The film is an easy watch, that’s predictable but still enjoyable. I liked seeing Alicia in a very different role than her time in Clueless, The Crush, or The Babysitter, and I thought she pulled it off well. It’s a shame she wasn’t given more roles like this to show a little range.
This will be the final time I watch True Crime in my lifetime. It was a decent film that is very forgettable.
I rate True Crime a two out of five and say skip it.