DVDs for Editors: Keane
British actor Damian Lewis (BAND OF BROTHERS) gives a stunning lead performance in Lodge Kerrigan’s powerful drama KEANE. He stars as William Keane, a man whose daughter was recently abducted at the Port Authority in Manhattan, so he patrols the bus depot, recreating in his mind exactly how it happened to see if he can figure out who took her or where she might be. He talks to himself, shouts suddenly, and looks over his shoulder with fear and paranoia, an edgy, twitchy, wholly unnerving, and remarkable performance. When he befriends a down-on-her-luck woman (Amy Ryan) and her young daughter (Abigail Breslin), it is hard to know whether he is just being helpful or whether he has some kind of ulterior motive, as the young girl is about the same age as his missing daughter. Kerrigan makes no judgments about Keane; although it is clear he is suffering from some kind of mental illness, in some ways he represents an everyman. The talented writer-director lets the tale tell itself; there is no score, and he uses only natural sound and lighting. Some of the film was even written while on location in order to make it yet more realistic, which adds to both its horror and its glory. KEANE is like no other movie ever made on the subject of child abduction, a grittily authentic film that will stay with viewers for a very long time.The movie is not very flashy and not particularly attractive. It is told in a very tight, handheld fashion and features actor Damian Lewis in pretty much every shot, usually in a close up. It’s not a movie like most others you have probably seen. Keane was executive produced by Steven Soderbergh and its his involvement that really makes Keane a worthy DVD for Editors …. though it is worth seeing on its own. There is only one piece of bonus material included on the Keane DVD, it’s an alternate edit of the film by Soderbergh himself. Soderbergh shuffles the narrative around revealing different things about the title character at different times and moving his actions into a bit of different context. I felt that Soderbergh’s edit was a bit more literal than the original film version but both end up at the same moving conclusion. What’s great about having both of these vesions on the DVD is one can really see the power of editing and how the shuffling of different scenes can make the viewer have a different emotional reaction. Soderbergh doesn’t use any different footage from the director’s cut (in fact he cuts a few scenes entirely), he only reshuffles the scenes into his own version. Judge for yourself by picking up your own copy of Keane. The alternate edit of the exact same film makes it a great DVD for Editors. And you can get it for cheap via Amazon. Also, check out this commentary on the alternate edit for some extra reading as well.