There was a point where 2022 was starting to look like the comeback of the erotic thriller subgenre of the late 80s and early 90s with both Deep Water and now Shattered trying to revive the genre. However, both Adrian Lyne’s latest and now director Luis Prieto’s films seem to be missing in two crucial elements. Eroticism and thrills. You can’t make an erotic thriller that’s neither erotic nor thrilling and that’s the biggest problem with Shattered.
Reclusive divorced millionaire Chris (Gotham’s Cameron Monaghan) is living alone in his mansion in Montana when one night he has a chance encounter with the woman of his dreams. He meets the dazzling Sky (Lilly Krug) in the supermarket looking for wine and the two hit it off. After Chris sustains an injury, Sky becomes his private carer however it’s not long before her true intentions come out and Chris is thrown into a life-or-death situation. His technologically advanced mansion that he designed himself to be his shield from the outside world now starts to turn into his prison.
Everything about Shattered feels so by-the-books and it’s clear right from the start of the film how everything is going to play out. So much so that I’m not entirely sure what reveals and moments were supposed to be twists given how blindingly obvious everything is right from the get-go. The poor dialogue and cheesy acting make for a very dull and uninteresting film.
It’s as if the film isn’t really trying to provide much suspense either as it’s at least forty minutes into film- which is only 92 minutes- before there’s even the slightest hint of some intrigue or thrills. It spends far too long painting the rather simple picture of the divorced tech millionaire who misses his ex-wife and daughter living in a nice house isolated in the middle of nowhere. It shouldn’t take forty minutes to set this up along with the idea that someone would want to rob him. And yet Shattered tries to pad out the runtime with unnecessary filler.
The film tries to spread itself into a feature film by introducing irrelevant and vexing side characters including John Malkovich’s Ronald, a creepy landlord whose curiosity starts to overwhelm him as he starts to get caught up in the evil plot albeit not for very long and his presence is just annoying. Malkovich is there for the pay cheque and that’s about it.
And it’s still not until about an hour into the film that we finally get to meet Frank Grillo’s Sebastian who we soon learn is Sky’s violent and manipulative stepfather. His entry to the film feels a bit out of place with him rocking up to the snowy Montana mountains in a convertible but nonetheless Grillo does his best to steer the film back on track and at least attempts to add some thrills and tension to the film. Once Grillo enters the scene there feels like much more urgency and at least some reason why some audience members may feel some thrills however ultimately, he doesn’t do enough to steer the film towards something vaguely watchable
Shattered doesn’t offer much in the way of thrills and given how predictable the plot it, the film trudges along for 92 long minutes until its not-so-shattering conclusion.
Signature Entertainment present Shattered on Digital Platforms & DVD 16th May