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Stars: Ben Affleck, Adrien Brody, Diane Lane, Bob Hoskins, Robin Tunney, Lois Smith, Molly Parker, Joe Spano

Director: Allen Coulter

Another real-life Hollywood mystery to follow The Black Dahlia. This one, though, albeit beautifully set in the 1950s, never reaches out and grabs you with its story.

Remaining woolly throughout, it offers three solutions to the supposedly-suicide shooting of 'B' movie film star George Reeves (Affleck), none of them presented with any conviction.

Private eye Simo (Brody), hired by Reeves' mother (Smith) to look into his death, finds plenty of suspicious circumstances, but no evidence to support a murder charge. But Reeves was having an affair with Toni (Lane), nominal wife of lecherous studio bigwig Eddie Mannix (Hoskins), and that obviously ruffles a few feathers.

Factwise, the movie plays fast and loose with the truth, making Reeves cavil against playing Superman in a TV series - 'I'll look like a damn fool' - when he'd already played the part in a feature film.

Affleck (hardly recognisable) and Lane give tough, professional performances, but you don't really care what becomes of them.

David Quinlan

USA 2006. UK Distributor: Buena Vista. Colour by De Luxe.
126 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 3.

Review date: 19 Nov 2006