The Cell is one hell of a mind fcuk of a movie. It features Jennifer Lopez as a therapist (Catherine Dean)who enters the minds of her patients in of one of the most visually stunning films I have ever seen.
One thing separates The Cell from a thriller you’d find on late night cable or streaming on NetFlix. And it’s that solitary difference that not only makes it special, but a cinematic landmark–That One Thing is the visionary imagination of director Tarsem Singh. In the hands of this music video veteran, a by-the-numbers story becomes the incidental backbone of one of the most visually arresting films of recent memory.
I saw this movie in 2000, I saw it in a theater and it was unnerving, it was beautiful but very unnerving when the protagonist [Lopez as Dean], goes into Stargher’s mind to explore what made him the killer he is and find his latest victim before it’s too late/
The film moves at an effectively erratic pace: action in the real world moves fairly swiftly, but once it’s in the world of the mind, the pace becomes more languid, befitting the surrealism of dreams. It is in this latter realm that the film really soars.
Lopez is convincingly, appealingly smart and vulnerable as the headstrong heroine and Vince Vaughan, well it’s nice to see him in his pre-bloated days and Vincent Donofrio as Stargher, is superb as he makes a lasting, albeit eerie impression in a very dialogue-light role.