REVIEW: THE GRUDGE 2

CAST

Sarah Michelle Gellar (Ringer)
Amber Tamblyn (Two and A Half Men)
Arielle Kebbel (The Vampire Diaries)
Edison Chen (The Dark Knight)
Sarah Roemer (Disturbia)
Matthew Knight (Cheaper By The Dozen 2)
Teresa Palmer (Warm Bodies)
Jennifer Beals (Lie To Me)
Christopher Cousins (Stargate Sg.1)
Jenna Dewan Tatum (Sueprgirl TV)
Ryo Ishibashi (Blue Tiger)

In Japanese society, it is said a curse is created when a person dies in the grip of a powerful rage or sorrow. Those who encounter the evil supernatural force are consumed by it, the curse is born repeatedly and spreads. The original victims of the curse, the Saeki family, haunt their Tokyo suburban house as ghosts and kill anyone who enters. Housewife Kayako Saeki was murdered by her husband Takeo after he discovered she loved another man, their son Toshio and pet cat Mar also being murdered, before Takeo was hanged by Kayako’s ghost. In the first film, American social worker Karen Davis tried to burn the house down to stop the curse, but failed, finding herself hospitalised and haunted by Kayako. The film’s chronology is told in a non-linear fashion, taking place in 2004 and 2006 respectively.

Karen’s younger sister Aubrey is summoned by their bed-ridden mother who informs Aubrey of Karen’s situation and sends her to Tokyo to retrieve her. In Japan, Aubrey struggles to communicate with the hospital staff but a journalist named Eason aids her. Aubrey briefly speaks with Karen, who quickly panics, and has to be restrained. Karen later escapes her restraints and flees through the hospital stalked by Kayako, until she makes it to the roof which Kayako throws her off in front of Aubrey and Eason. Eason explains the curse to Aubrey, revealing he rescued Karen from the house fire, and has been investigating the Saeki murders and surrounding events. The two go to the house to retrieve Kayako’s diary, but Toshio drags Aubrey inside to curse her.

Eason takes the diary to an associate, who explains Kayako’s mother Mrs. Kawamata was an itako who exorcised evil spirits from visitors and fed them to her daughter. Aubrey and Eason plan to visit Mrs. Kawamata the next day, but at night, Eason develops photographs he took of the Saeki house, but Kayako emerges from a photo and murders him. Aubrey discovers his body in the morning and travels alone to Mrs. Kawamata’s remote rural home. Kayako’s mother warns her the curse is irreversible, and is suddenly killed by her daughter. Aubrey ventures to the house, following an image of Karen inside but encounters Takeo’s ghost who plays out the night he discovered his wife’s disloyalty, and snaps Aubrey’s neck.

Two years later, school girls Allison Flemming, Vanessa, and Miyuki, break into the house on a dare but Allison is locked in the closet and encounters Aubrey’s ghost but the girls escape. After Miyuki and Vanessa are consumed by the curse, Allison speaks with school counsellor Ms. Dale about the curse, but Dale denies its existence, revealing she went to the house and is actually a ghost herself. Allison is haunted by the ghosts of her friends, and she eventually flees back to Chicago, where she stays with her parents.

Several months on, the Kimbles move into an apartment block in Chicago. The young son Jake is disturbed by a strange presence in the building brought about by a hooded stranger who covers windows with newspaper. Jake’s father Bill and stepmother Trish are influenced by the curse, Bill accusing his wife of having an affair but she bludgeons him with a frying pan. Jake and his sister Lacey return from school, but Jake finds his family are all dead. He runs into the hooded person, revealed to be Allison, who explains the curse followed her. Kayako appears in Allison’s hood, finally taking her, and then emerges to attack Jake.

Takashi Shimizu did a great job directing this sequel, which grabs the audience’s attention with bone-chilling scenes and with moments that make you jump. Like the first movie, this sequel has disturbing and creepy images that will stick in your mind after the movie is over. The mysterious yet dramatic atmosphere of the movie created an eerie feeling of the ongoing horror and the built-up suspense, which are contributed by the cast members’ dramatic acting. Overall, this is a movie with the right balance of horror and drama, but doesn’t surpass its original.

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REVIEW: THE PROPHECY 1,2,3,4 & 5

CAST

Christopher Walken (Pulp Fiction)
Elias Koteas (Crash)
Virginia Madsen (Sideways)
Eric Stoltz (Caprica)
Viggo Motensen (Lord of The Rings)
Amanda Plummer (drunks)
Adam Goldberg (A Beautiful Mind)
Steve Hytner (Roswell)
Sandra Ellis Lafferty (Walk The Line)

As the movie opens, we see Thomas Daggett lose his faith in God at the very moment in which he was to be confirmed as a priest; his loss of faith is interestingly a result of having been shown too much of heaven rather than too little.

The movie then jumps to the present, where Daggett is a police detective investigating the death of a man-like enigma with no eyes and fetus-like cell structure. We have already seen how this being attacked the angel Simon and lost the fight. The injuries Simon sustains in the struggle upsets his plans, plans which consist of retrieving the soul of the recently deceased most evil man on earth before “the enemy” seizes that soul for their continuing nefarious purposes.Before Simon dies, he gives the soul to a young Indian girl named Mary, and the plot revolves around the enemy’s attempts to retrieve the black soul from her and the efforts of Daggett, Mary’s teacher, and a medicine man to release the black soul from within Mary’s body. The enemy, as Daggett learns by translating a Bible found on the body of the initial victim, is none other than the archangel Gabriel.An unknown 23rd chapter of Revelation in the ancient Bible describes a second war going on in heaven, a war led by the archangel Gabriel who refuses to bow down to the “monkeys” of humanity whom God gave souls and thus elevated above even the angels. This is not a “Left Behind” type of story about the end times; it is a saga of the second war in heaven, a war among God’s angels themselves. Naturally, such a conflict cannot end without the original fallen angel Lucifer involving himself in the action, and all of this makes for a quite satisfying conclusion to the movie.This movie is blessed with terrific acting. Christopher Walken in particular delivers a powerful portrayal of the tortured archangel Gabriel. There are some pretty good special effects, particularly those showing the horrors of the fighting among the angels in heaven itself. Most religious individuals should have no real problems with The Prophecy because it never portrays itself as representing some kind of truth or challenges its viewers’ own beliefs. While the movie has its flaws, it succeeds in presenting a problematical storyline with the required seriousness it requires in order to be effective.

CAST

Christopher Walken (Pulp Fiction)
Russell Wong (Romeo Must Die)
Jennifer Beals (Lie To Me)
Brittany Murphy (Sin City)
Eric Roberts (The Dark Knight)
Steve Hytner (Roswell)
Bruce Abbott (The Net: The Series)
J.G. Hertzler (Star Trek: DS9)
Tom Towles (The Devil’s Rehects)
Danny Strong (Buffy)
Kathryn Morris (Cold Case)

Image result for the prophecy 2Four years after the events of The Prophecy, Gabriel returns and the war in the heavens continues unabated. It is surprisingly difficult to find good guys among any of these angels, but the new plan to thwart Gabriel’s long-sought destruction of humanity involves the far less than immaculate conception of a child to human and angelic parents. As Gabriel himself points out, the existence of Nephilim upon the earth didn’t work out very well back in the early days following Creation – but it’s apparently the best plan the archangel Michael can come up with. Somehow the existence of a new Nephilim, possessing the powers of an angel and the free will of a human, is supposed to bring the warring angel factions togetherIf you’re wondering what happened to Thomas Daggett, would-be priest turned detective turned prophet from the first movie, that question is answered early on in this sequel. From there, the focus of the story quickly turns to Valerie Rosales (Jennifer Beals), who engages in the world’s weirdest one-night stand with a man (actually an angel) she hits with her car. The universe’s fastest-growing unborn child is conceived, and it’s up to the baby’s father, Danyeal (Russell Wong), and the archangel Michael (Eric Roberts) to protect both child and mother from Gabriel. Coming along for the ride this time is Izzy (Brittany Murphy), whom Gabriel has kept alive following her lover’s pact suicide with her boyfriend.As in the first movie, Christopher Walken steals the show. All other characters, no matter how important they are in terms of the second war in heaven, are merely bit players in Walken’s world. Sure, Gabriel hates all of us “monkeys” whom God elevated above angels when He gave us souls.I actually enjoyed this sequel. Walken may well be the only actor capable of truly portraying Gabriel, and he is absolutely at his best in The Prophecy II. There’s even more dark humor this time around in terms of his relationships with humans and their technology, and I found this ending even better than that of the first movie.CAST

Christopher Walken (Pulp Fiction)
Vincent Spano (Alive)
Dave Buzzotta (Last Resort)
Kathryn Butler (All You Need)
Steve Hytner (Roswell)
Brad Dourif (Curse of Chucky)
Sandra Ellis Lafferty (Walk The Line)

This film follows the original and the first sequel very closely. In fact, you could put the three movies together back to back to back and have a coherent movie and think you’re watching one big movie. Long story short: Gabriel (Walken) is leading a band of rebel angels who in the original and first sequel is bent on destroying the human race so they can become God’s favorite kids again; this sequel, Gabriel is reduced to being a human (you become what you hate), and is somewhat of a good guy.Danyael Rosales is a street preacher who thinks God does not care about anyone because of the death of his parents, Valerie Rosales and the angel Danyael from the previous film. He is then forced to face his destiny. As a Nephilim, he has some of the angels’ abilities, such as regeneration, and can only be killed if his heart is removed. One night, a blind assassin shoots Danyael as he preaches before a crowd, but the assassin is driven off before he can take out Danyael’s heart. As punishment for his failure, Zophael kills the assassin and goes after Danyael himself with an extendable weapon with a blade that can be turned into a three-pronged hook. However, Danyael is protected by Gabriel, a now-human fallen angel who killed Danyael’s father and performed many misdeeds. After being defeated by Danyael’s mother, Gabriel was turned into a human as punishment. Having spent years as a human, he now realizes how wrong he was in the past.Zophael convinces Danyael’s girlfriend Maggie to work with him to stop Danyael, but when she becomes suspicious of his motives, she shoots the angel. It has little effect on Zophael, and he tells her what he is. Frightened and confused, Maggie agrees to help him, and the two catch up to Danyael on a Native American reservation, where he is going to confront Pyriel, another angel who wants to overthrow God. Danyael briefly meets Mary, a Native American woman (first introduced as a child in the first film). Mary informs Danyael that she dreamed of his coming, and that she believes he will be victorious against Pyriel. After parting from Mary, Danyael is attacked by Zophael, crashing Maggie’s truck and badly injuring her. He then faces off against Danyael in battle and seemingly defeats him by impaling his chest with a motorcycle tailpipe, but the angel gets back up and uses his weapon to impale Danyael from behind. Before Zophael can remove Danyael’s heart, Maggie empties her gun into him, stunning him. Danyael takes his chance and removes Zophael’s heart through the hole he created earlier, finally killing him.Danyael heads off to face Pyriel, armed with Zophael’s weapon while Gabriel watches over Maggie. He confronts Pyriel, but is no match for him, although he succeeds in impaling him with Zophael’s weapon. Danyael is about to lose when God seemingly sends down a lightning bolt, electrocuting the weapon and, through it, Pyriel, weakening him. Danyael extends the blade into its prong form and removes Pyriel’s heart with it, killing him and apparently ending the war in Heaven. He returns to Gabriel and Maggie, who is on the verge of death. Maggie is saved when Gabriel’s angel abilities return to him once again; he heals her wounds on his way back to Heaven. Then Danyael comes to realizes that God is not indifferent and does care.Good movie if you like the Prophecy storyline, its a nice ending to the Christopher Walken story, as the next two films take the franchise in a different direction.

CAST

John Light (Partition)
Sean Pertwee (Gotham)
Kari Wuhrer (Eight Legged Freaks)
Doug Bradley (Hellraiser)
Jason London (Carrie 2)
Claudia Templeton (Pulse 2)

Image result for the prophecy uprisingAfter a slew of murders in a Romanian town, Interpol Agent John Reigert, (John Light) and local inspector Dani Simionescu, (Sean Pertwee) are teamed up together to investigate the crimes. After searching through the clues, they come to a deserted house where he realizes that his long-lost sister, Allison, (Kari Wuhrer) is still alive. As they try to get to her, she is being chased by a group of demons for a book in her possession that spells the end of humanity. As they race to find her and get the book in control, they fend off constant attacks from a shape shifting demon who wants the book for their own purposes.Image result for the prophecy uprisingThis was a fairly nice addition to the series. The gore here isn’t that bad. The majority are the traditional hearts ripped out, leaving the empty chest behind, while we do get a couple of other deaths in here. A person is mauled by dogs, leaving cuts and bloody scratches over the body, some gunshots and falling over balconies, landing with a bloody splat on impact. The film’s best scene is the flashback to the torture chamber, as the walk-through of the house prior, darkened only with the use of flashlights to provide light, full of twisted staircases, corners and more, all in an eerie mood and ambiance, and then to swing around full-tilt and show a series of gruesome tortures being inflicted is quite a sight. The tortures aren’t that sickening, but they are painful, and it helps it out with making it a really memorable scene. From the escape at the police station to the ending, we get a non-stop series of great moments that really have a nice flow to them as the fight continues on and makes for some decent action sequences.Image result for the prophecy uprisingA really sinister showdown in the decrepit manor is an undoubted highlight, as is the car chase through the narrow streets of the city. The opening foot chase through the back-alleys of the city, through the yards and out into the open, culminating in a real surprise in the church is a great opener, and the little scenes, such as the POV shot of the pursuer running up stairs or the moment where they look down into a puddle and see the barely visible shadow of the pursuer above make for a great all-around scene. It’s pretty decent at times.

CAST

Kari Wuhrer (Eight Legged Freaks)
John Light (Partition)
Jason Scott lee (Timecop 2)
Tony Todd (Chuck)
Jason London (Carrie 2)

Image result for the prophecy forsakenThe movie opens with a brief flashback to “The Prophecy: Uprising” as Father Constantine finds the Lexicon – the final book of God’s prophecy and its continuing to write itself – in the catacombs of his church. When he keels over from a heart attack, now it’s up to a grad student, Allison (Kari Wührer, reprising her role), to keep it from the forces of darkness.Cut to the streets of Bucharest. A young girl named Maria loses her ball into the busy street. Suddenly, Lucifer (reprised by John Light) appears to her and tells her she should go get it. Almost trancelike, she wanders into the street and as a result is run over by a vehicle. Allison witnesses the whole thing and runs to the little girl’s side. The girl tells Allison she has a message for her—but she cannot give it to her yet. On her way down, Allison brushed into Dylan (Jason Scott Lee) who was standing at the entrance to her apartment building. We next see him sitting in a dark room assembling and loading his gun. A mysterious figure named Stark (Tony Todd) behind him discusses “the job” he was hired to do—kill Allison. Dylan tries to take the noble route and shoots himself in the head rather than take another life. Not to be discourage, Stark brings Dylan back to life on the spot and tells him that the brief taste of hell he just tasted should convince him to work for Stark.mortal-kombat-legacy-episode-1-600x260Dylan breaks into Allison’s house and holds her at gunpoint, and tells her that he was hired to do a job, but something is telling him that she is different. She was meant to live. He wants to know why she should live. She responds by saying that she has been entrusted with a responsibility, but she will not say what it is. Torn between doing the right thing and doing his job, Dylan kidnaps Allison and takes her with him. Stark breaks into the apartment a short time later; he tears the place apart and finds the Lexicon. Yet, it is only a decoy—a set of magazine articles bound together in the Lexicon’s cover.Dylan takes Allison to his “friend” Gabriella’s house to get her a wig, some perfume, and some iron pills. The iron pills change the taste of her blood and the perfume changes her smell. Angels hunt by smell and taste (according to the first The Prophecy film). As they are escaping from a group of angels, Dylan explains the angel hierarchy—Cherubim and seraphim are the most dangerous. He then sends her on her way and goes back to fight a hopeless battle to buy her time. The perfume and iron pills do the trick; Allison is able to escape. Stark’s drones capture Dylan and bring him before Stark. Stark claims to Dylan that Allison is going to start genocide the likes of which the world has never seen, so Dylan should have killed her when he had the chance.Underworld_09Allison goes to the only “person” she can – Lucifer. He explains that the Lexicon is going to name the Antichrist in a matter of hours. The angels in Heaven do not want that kind of information falling into the hands of the wrong people. However, there are laws in Heaven against killing people, hence the hired assassin. Unfortunately, for Heaven, Allison turned their hired gun before he could finish the job. He then tells her that he will not get involved in this one, in spite the fact that he already had.When Allison comes out of his rickety old mansion, there are two angels waiting to take her. She races across the field until she comes upon a funeral procession—for the young girl Maria, who Lucifer sent to her death in the opening. The angels lose track of her in the crowd. The procession ends at an old church, which is safe ground for Allison. Meanwhile, Stark continues to torture Dylan because he still needs him, especially since Allison trusts Dylan now. Stark tells Dylan to get her out of the church, and they will take care of the rest.

Back inside the church, Allison hears the voice of the little girl calling to her: she says that she feels so cold, and tells her that the “bad angels” do not want us in Heaven. They are trying to keep us out, so she cannot let them have the book, no matter what. Dylan shows up at the church and stays with Allison through the night; he asks her if she is sure that she is on the right side in this war. Allison claims that “you have to take some things on faith”. Dylan takes a look outside and sees dozens of angels waiting for them; worried, he feels that they must get out of there soon or else there will be hundreds by the morning. Thus, he tells Allison to wait for his signal and then run directly to his car. When she gets there, though, he has locked her out; the double-cross is complete.Image result for the prophecy forsakenThe angels capture Allison and bring her before Stark; he tells her that he is against the whole messy idea of Armageddon. If they can find the name of the Antichrist, they can kill the child before the apocalypse and save humanity. Allison claims she’s not keen on the idea of going over God’s head, and she doesn’t think he is either or she’d already be dead. Stark promises to kill her if he has to; however, he lets her leave for now. As Allison leaves, she runs into Lucifer in the park; he helps her reason through what has happened. Stark and a few of the other seraphim aren’t happy with the idea of Armageddon. After all, it means Heaven will be flooded with humans, beloved by God above even the seraphim themselves. Of course, Lucifer likes the idea of Armageddon because it will mean that a billion new corrupt souls will appear on his doorstep.qZoxk3h5TB2hFwtPV4ZltoK6OvsShe leaves to check on the Lexicon’s hiding place, but she’s attacked by a homeless man. A voice whispers to her that it is time to fight back; that is just what she does – she fights off the homeless man and snaps his neck. However, Stark and Dylan have already figured out where she has hidden it as Dylan remembered that she used to take a walk through the same park every day. Stark says she would have gone that way to check on the Lexicon, and thus they head to an abandoned house that Stark theorizes contains the Lexicon. Allison sees them heading for the house and breaks in through the cellar. The Lexicon has finished its task of writing the name of the Antichrist—Mykael Paun, and he shall bear four distinct marks on his face. Allison grabs the book and climbs the stairs to the top of the building. Stark is in hot pursuit; he catches up to her on the roof, cornering her and claims that the child is there in Bucharest. He then asks her if she wonders why she was chosen and how she’s been able to keep the Lexicon from creatures more powerful than her. He states that she is a “nephalim,” a half-breed between an angel named “Simon” (a character from the first film) and a human, bred specifically to protect the Lexicon; therefore Allison is nothing more than a tool.imagesJR6PV6ZKDylan, who is feeling the effects of death more than ever, staggers to the roof; he is caught between them. Allison tells him to accept God’s will on faith, but Stark is telling him to complete his task so he can be done with this miserable existence. Dylan is torn; he goes back and forth between them before shooting Allison repeatedly in the chest. Nevertheless, there was method in his madness; as Allison falls over the precipice, the pages of the Lexicon scatter everywhere. The winds carry them throughout the streets of Bucharest, and Allison survives due to her “nephalim” healing powers. Now, Stark has no way of tracking them all down. The final page, the one Stark was looking for, falls at the feet of a young boy—a young boy named Mykael Paun.Image result for the prophecy forsaken
Prophecy: Forsaken is a good movie that stands pretty well on its own two feet. Its more of a sequel to the 4th film than the whole franchise. Tony Todd delivers an excellent performance as he always does. It’s a nice ender to the franchise unless they decide to more.

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REVIEW: LIE TO ME – SEASON 1-3

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MAIN CAST

Tim Roth (The Incredible Hulk)
Kelli Williams (Army Wives)
Brendan Hines (Terminator: TSCC)
Monica Raymond (Chicago Fire)
Hayley McFarland (The Conjuring)
Mekhi Phifer (Divergent)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Jake Thoams (A.I.)
Tim Guinee (Iron Man)
Nolan Gerard Funk (Arrow)
David Anders (Izombie)
Rance Howard (A Beautiful Mind)
Anthony Ruivivar (Scream: The Series)
Isabella Hoffman (Legends of Tomorrow)
Sasha Roiz (Caprica)
Kristen Ariza (Startup)
Mekenna Melvin (ChucK)
Sean Patrick Thomas (Save The Last Dance)
Deidre Lovejpy (Bones)
Carlos Lacamara (Heroes Reborn)
Megan Follows (Reign)
Christine Adams (Agents of SHIELD)
Ajay Mehta (Anger Management)
Shea Whigham (Agent Carter)
Cheryl White (Major Crimes)
Virginia Williams (Fairly Legal)
Pej Vahdat (Bones)
Jennifer Beals (Flashdance)
Kevin Tighe (Lost)
Currie Graham (Stargate: The Ark of Truth)
D.B. Woodside (Buffy)
Jason Beghe (Californication)
Clea DuVall (The Faculty)
Mageina Tovah (Spider-Man 2 & 3)
Melissa Tang (Mom)
Jonathan Banks (The Lizzie Borden Chronicles)
Erika Christensen (Flightplan)
John Pyper-Ferguson (Caprica)
James Marsters (Buffy)
Gretchen Egolf (Roswell)
Marc Blucas (Red State)
David Kaufman (Superman: TAS)
Karina Logue (Bates Motel)
Sean O’Bryan (The Princess Diaries)
Garret Dillahunt (Terminator: TSCC)
Lennie James (The Walking Dead)
Alicia Coppola (Another World)
Roy Werner (Weeds)
Jason Gedrick (Beauty and The Beast)
April Grace (Lost)
Todd Stashwick (The Originals)
Ricky Jay (Flashforward)
Miguel Ferrer (Robocop)
Felicia Day (Dr. Horrible)
Jason Dohring (Veronica Mars)
Ashley Johsnon (Dollhouse)
Howard Hesseman (That 70s Show)
Mark Harelik (The Big Bang Theory)
Melissa George (Triangle)
Max Greenfield (Veronica Mars)
Bruce Weitz (General Hospital)
Enver Gjokaj (Agent Carter)
Alona Tal (Cult)
Khary Payton (Teen Titans)
Michael Beach (The Abyss)
Yara Shahidi (Ugly Betty)
Alyssa Diaz (The Vampire Diaries)
Kenneth Mitchell (Odyssey 5)
Richard Burgi (Chuck)
Conor O’Farrell (Stir of Echoes)
Catherine Dent (Termiantor: TSCC)
Kenny Johnson (Cold Case)
Erick Avari (Stargate)
Carmen Argenziano (Stargate SG.1)
Natalie Dreyfuss (The Originals)
Tiffany Hines (Bones)
Haley Ramm (X-Men 3)
Monique Gabriela Curnen (The Dark Knight)
Jennifer Marsala (Hart of Dixie)
Shawn Doyle (Reign)
Jamie Hector (Heroes)
Audrey Marie Anderson (Arrow)
Brent Sexton (Birds of Prey)
Katherine LaNasa (The Campaign)
Daniela Bobadilla (Anger Management)
Tricia Helfer (Battlestar Galactica)
Kathleen Gati (Arrow)
Noel Fisher (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Maury Sterling (The A-Team)
Jessica Parker Kennedy (The Secret Circle)
Brandon Jones (Pretty Little Liars)
Jim Beaver (Mike & Molly)
Barry Shabaka Henley (Heroes)
John Diehl (Stargate)
Keith Robinson (Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue)
Michael B. Jordan (Fantastic four)
Frankie Faison (The Silence of The Lambs)
Paula Malcomson (The Hunger Games)
Victoria Pratt (Mutant X)
Adam Godley (Powers)
Dylan Minnette (Goosebumps)
Annabeth Gish (Flashforward)
Alexandra Lydon (Mockingbird)
Ashton Holmes (A History of Violence)

We have all told a lie at one point in our lives. While our the lies we have told may be small, one needs to look no further than his or her local news to see that not all lies are harmless. Sometimes though lies seem like a last resort and getting the truth isn’t as simple as a lie detector. Dr. Cal Lightman (Tim Roth) would be the first to tell you a lie detector is garbage and he illustrates this point in an early episode in the series.  A lie detector establishes a baseline for truthful statements and then measures body factors like pulse rate, skin conductivity and temperature; any changes from the baseline readings indicates a lie. The problem is as Dr. Lightman shows in his trademark sardonic fashion, do something as simple as introduce an attractive woman in the room and the most honest man will instantly be a liar to the machine. His solution? Himself.


Lie to Me throws viewers into the world of human lie detector, Cal Lightman. His lie detecting skills rely on universal facial expressions and how a well-trained individual can detect a liar from reading “micro expressions.” Lightman heads up the private deception detection firm The Lightman Group and throughout the course of Lie to Me’s thirteen freshman episodes, Lightman and his associates Dr. Gillian Foster, Eli Loker, and new protégé Ria Torres will put their finely trained skills to the test as their group is hired from clients ranging from billionaires worried about potential gold diggers to law enforcement in stopping a copycat serial rapist. As absurd as the notion of Lightman being able to read facial expressions to determine whether a person is lying is, prepare to be blown away, as it’s all based on the very real and groundbreaking research of Dr. Paul Ekman.


Dr. Ekman pioneered the study of micro expressions and universal emotion and serves as a creative inspiration for Roth’s character. The creators have kept Ekman in the loop throughout the creative process and Fox allows Ekman to blog about what is factual and what is exaggerated on the show’s website, which earns this new series bonus points for giving viewers something to think about once the episode ends.

Once Roth is able to establish himself in the role of Lightman and we get bits and pieces of his human side (his relationship with Dr. Foster as well as his teenage daughter). Fortunately, the formula of the show does allow for Lightman’s other colleagues to hold their own as there is almost always a secondary case assigned to the pair not working with Lightman on the primary case. This allows for character bonds to be formed, in some cases from scratch as Monica Raymund’s character, Ria Torres, is a new addition to the team and provides some great dramatic tension from time to time as her ability is natural, which often draws the ire and jealousy of her brilliant boss.


Finally, the most unique positive aspect of Lie to Me comes from viewers being able to play along at home. As we learn little explanations of micro expressions from Lightman, in later episodes it’s fun to try and spot character motivations before they are revealed to us by one of the team.

Back for a second longer season, this show is every bit the show that I so enjoyed in the first season and even a little bit more. As with all shows, the first season suffers from a few growing pains. Actors need to settle into their roles, writers need to discover their characters’ true personalities and basically the show needs to settle. Thats why the second season is often a bit better than the first and Lie to me is no exception to that. The show was smoother, the acting more comfortable and the character relationships had chance to really blossom in a believable manner.

In this second season Cal seems to be much more lively, a great deal more fun to watch. HIs mock nervous energy, dry sense of humour and heart of gold is a more likeable. The other key element I liked in this series was the advancement of the relationships. There’s not any major romantic steps forward in this season, but Cal’s relationship with his daughter is a real high point of the show, as are his relationships with Foster and the rest of the gang. Every character seems to enjoy real chemistry with the others and that’s rare in any show, yet alone a procedural drama.

Overall this is another strong season. The show is funny when it needs to be, fast paced and action packed when thats called for, and finally it is interesting enough to more than keep your attention with every episode. Quite frankly, by the end of this season I would normally be hooked for the long hall. Shame then that there’s only one season left to watch

I was aware going in that this was going to be the final season of the show however it quickly becomes apparent that show runners weren’t similarly informed . The series really didn’t have the feel of a final season and indeed the show seemed to be picking up pace as it approached its final episode with new characters getting screen time and relationships moving forward with the usual pace of a procedural show finding its feet.

Because of this not only did the season not feel like a final season, the finale lacked any kind of closure whatsoever. It’s a shame as this show deserved more than just to fizzle out in what felt like a mid-season break rather than a complete end.

All I can say to finish is that once again a good show has been cancelled early while so many bad shows remain, which is a real shame. However, don’t let the poor ending to this show put you off.