Tenderness (15)

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The Independent Culture

This odd psychodrama is notable for Russell Crowe's low-key performance as a cop obsessed by the case of a young man named Eric (Jon Foster).

Incarcerated for the murder of his parents, Eric is (implausibly) out on parole when a young girl, Lori (Sophie Traub), attaches herself to him as he drives through upstate New York; he is pursued by the cop, who's convinced that Eric will kill again. Based on a novel by Robert Cormier, it has tension but not a great deal of meaning, and seems confused about the real subject of its story: Crowe's tender care of his hospitalised wife, Eric's possible psychosis or Lori's escape from an abusive stepfather. All bid for attention, none achieves clarity, and the ominous disquiet that's been building just dribbles away.