Henry's Crime Blu-ray Review: Keanu Reeves Branches Out

"Henry's Crime" is something of a crime in itself.
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What is Henry's Crime? Apart from a poor title, it's a movie about some poor dope by the name of Henry who perpetrates a misdeed. In this instance, the aforementioned Henry feller is played by none other than Keanu Reeves. Now, should that mere fact not be enough to have you running for the hills, please be advised that Mr. Reeves also decided to branch out from his usual bland method of acting to co-produce this low-key dramedy. Still reading? Still curious as to what Henry's Crime is? Well, it's a yarn about Henry Torne, whose entire life is "Torne" when he unknowingly agrees to be the getaway driver for a group of friends who are out to rob a bank. When his pals flee, Henry winds up in jail for a crime he didn't commit.

Now, you'd think the man could have argued his innocence and possibly been freed; but, as we soon learn, Henry has no meaning in his life and sees this as an opportunity to get away from his wife (Judy Greer), whom he no longer has any feelings for (and vice versa). After befriending an old con man, Max (James Caan), who is not only extremely content with life in jail and continuously threatens the men and women at his parole hearings just so that he can stay inside, but who also instills Henry with something of a purpose; or rather, encourages the lost lad to find his purpose in life. And, then, after being released from jail, Henry comes up with a cockamamie ploy to actually commit the crime he was put away for -- and rob the bank.

Convincing Max to finally stop intimidating the people who control his freedom so that he can at long last be released, he and Henry start sketching out a plan to pull off their heist. Infiltrating a nearby theater which contains a tunnel leading to the bank (a little leftover bit of history from the Prohibition Era), the boys make the acquaintance of a rather despondent and annoying actress named Julie (Vera Farmiga, the film's weakest link -- and just as annoying as her character), who becomes Keanu's love-interest (and turns the otherwise inconspicuous production into something of a romantic affair). Bill Duke, Fisher Stevens, Danny Hoch and Currie Graham co-star.

What is Henry's Crime? Frankly, it's something that could have been much more. The movie definitely has a little heart to it. It certainly tries to make its own formula work. Hell, I'll even give Keanu Reeves some props for branching out to produce something he obviously thought was worth investing in. And, while this minimalist feature manages to at least being watchable, there are a number of things (such as plotholes, a very corny ending, the acting courtesy of Keanu and Vera Farmiga) that prevent it from ultimately succeeding -- and its extremely limited run in theaters should serve as evidence of its letdown.

Another letdown here (although I'm not sure if it really is a letdown or not) is the lack of any special features whatsoever (save for a number of trailers for other films -- most of which are oddly sports-oriented). Fox Home Entertainment brings us a 1080p/AVC transfer, which presents the movie in its original 2.35:1 aspect ratio. The presentation here is creditable, sporting some bright colors and fine detail throughout. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix accompanying the film here works for the minor, mostly forgettable caper dramedy flick this really is, but don't expect anything noteworthy. Optional English (SDH) and Spanish subtitles are included.

In short: Henry's Crime is something of a crime in itself.

For an opportunity to win one of two DVDs and judge for yourself, enter the Cinema Sentries Henry's Crime giveaway.

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