Strange Days [1995]

Director: Kathryn Bigelow
Stars: Ralph Fiennes, Angela Bassett, Juliette Lewis, Tom Sizemore, Michael Wincott
Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery
Rating: R (Restricted)
Runtime: 145 minutes

James Cameron wrote the script for this not-so-futuristic science fiction tale about a former vice cop (Ralph Fiennes) who now sells addicting, virtual reality clips that allow a user to experience the recorded sensations of others. He becomes embroiled in a murder conspiracy, tries to save a former girlfriend (Juliette Lewis), and has a romance with his chauffeur and bodyguard (Angela Bassett). Cameron's ex-wife, director Kathryn Bigelow (Point Break), brought the whole, busy, violent enterprise to the screen, and while the film's socially relevant heart is in the right place, its excesses wear one out. Some of the casting doesn't quite click either: Fiennes isn't really right for his nervous role, and Lewis is annoying (and unbelievable as the hero's much-yearned-for former squeeze). Expect some ugly if daring moments with the virtual reality stuff. --Tom Keogh

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