Civic Duty

Civic Duty

On DVD: 
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Running Time: 
94 minutes

In a post 9/11 society people are being bombarded with fear by their own government and or the media. While most people try and ignore the suggestion that America could fall under another terror attack by going about their lives as they had done before one man succumbs. Recently fired from his job, Terry Allen (Peter Krause: Dirty, Sexy, Money) spends most of his day mailing out resumes and looking for ways to end his boredom. When a “Middle Eastern” man moves in downstairs Allen becomes paranoid that the man may be a terrorist.

With a plot like this, Orwell and Hitchcock come to mind. The potential to start a running commentary on post 9/11 life under a fear spreading government and the effects of fear and paranoia birthed by xenophobia and stress could have led this film in a whole other direction. As it is the film is just okay. A lot of the logic behind the build up seems contrived and the reactions by Allen to his new neighbor are way over the top. There is an explanation towards the end of the film that tries to sway your judgment about Allen’s psychological state to put things into perspective but I think even that comes too late to salvage the experience. I would suggest this film only as a desperate rental. Its not terrible but it could have been better.

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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