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The Two Faces Of January

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Director Hossein Amini  gets an A plus  for adapting Patrica Highsmith’s novel ‘The Two Faces of January’ into a taut, tense thriller.

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Nothing is what it seems and the characters all seem to have hidden agendas.  Set in 1962 the film opens with  the elegant and rich looking  couple Chester MacFarland (Mortensen) and Colette  MacFarland(Dunst) enjoying the ruins in Greece like typical American tourist. Along the way they befriend Rydal(Oscar Drive) a tour guide who is always looking to make a quick buck and who seems to be running from a nebulous past.  Chester, a man who is on the run from business deals gone bad and a wife who made the choice to be with him.

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They meet for dinner and Rydal seems to have found a  kindred spirit with his new found companions. Is  he looking to run a scam or just attracted to the beautiful yet some what naive Colette. Things seem to be going well, until a fateful accident that put all three on the run and test the limits of their friendship. Who can trust who? The layers peel away with tension and it kept me on the edge of my seat. As the plot moves along we learn a little more about these characters and the complexity of their relationships.

Viggo Mortensen plays a man broken by his own ego and obsession with his wife, while Dunst gives us a delicate, performance as a woman that yet you will wonder  about her motivation as the film reaches its tragic climax.

Magnolia Pictures will release THE TWO FACES OF JANUARY on iTunes/On Demand August 28th, 2014

And in theaters September 26th, 2014

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