Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (January 11, 2017)
When it comes to direct-to-video movies, Nicolas Cage remains king, but others contend for the crown as well. We must consider Keanu Reeves as part of this battle, for I feel like I see his name attached to direct-to-video projects pretty frequently.
Reeves appears in another straight-to-video project via 2016ís The Whole Truth. After someone murders Boone Lassiter (Jim Belushi), his son Mike (Gabriel Basso) gets charged with the crime. Heck, the young man even appears to confess to the killing.
However, Mikeís mother Loretta (Renee Zellweger) believes in her sonís innocence and asks attorney and family friend Richard Ramsey (Reeves) to handle the case. Along with fellow lawyer Janelle Brady (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), Ramsey digs into the case and finds layers of complexity involved.
Try as I might, I find it tough to get past a certain bias against direct-to-video movies Ė especially those with big-name actors involved. These smell of desperation, as if the studios know they films stink so they dump them onto the home market in an attempt to salvage some of the costs.
Semi-snobbery aside, my skepticism toward direct-to-video flicks comes hard-earned. Iíve watched a lot of these releases, and in truth, the vast majority of these range from mediocre to terrible.
Still, enough of them entertain that hope springs, so I gave Truth a shot Ė and Iím glad I did, as it offers a reasonably solid thriller.
On the positive side, I like the way Truth starts with the trial and reveals the past in flashback. While not an innovative technique, it serves the tale well and creates a solid framework onto which we enter the proceedings.
Truth also comes with a good array of twists and turns, all of which the trial scenario reveals in an interesting manner. A standard chronological presentation wouldíve seemed dull, but the flashback setting means that these tidbits and revelations become more intriguing.
At times Truth threatens to go a little crazy with surprises and curveballs, though. I suspect the story doesnít hold together especially well upon close examination, as it tosses a lot of semi-unbelievable nuggets at the audience.
Still, Truth does what it needs to do to entertain. It creates an intriguing story and maintains suspense pretty well across 93 minutes. Nothing about it dazzles, but the movie turns into an enjoyable thriller.