Suspect Zero

Release Date: August 27, 2004

Could you please check to see if the back of my head is shiny enough?

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When tracing an outbreak of an infectious disease, whether a new agent or a resurgence of a known strain, epidemiologists search for what they term Patient Zero, or the person to whom all cases of the current outbreak can be traced. Suspect Zero takes that concept and applies it to serial killers, as it tells the tale of an FBI agent tracking the murderer of a number of famous mass murderers. The trail leads to a former agent who seems to have dedicated his life to finding the elusive Suspect Zero, a serial killer who has apparently been killing for a very, very long time, even mimicking the MO of other mass murderers when it suits his purposes. A battle of wits between the rogue ex-agent and the active G-Man ensues, as the current agent tries to stop his retired colleague.

The most intriguing aspect of Suspect Zero is found in the cast list, which refers to an FBI remote viewer trainer and an FBI remote viewer. Now for those of you who aren’t up on your paranormal terminology, a remote viewer is one who can uncover information about a selected person, place, thing or event, usually called the target, that is distant from the viewer either in time or space. The remote viewer is often given something related to the target to assist in focusing the psi energy. Remote viewing differs from other types of psychic activity in that in order to be termed remote viewing, the data-gathering must follow a certain set of approved protocols, so that the accuracy of the information and the inaccessibility of same to the remote viewer through any other means currently known to science can be verified against a standardized set of parameters. Various government agencies created programs in the ‘70s and ‘80s to explore remote viewing as a means of reconnaissance during times of war; while no scientific data supporting the existence of remote viewing as an actual ability has been declassified, the programs were funded annually on merit, and many lasted a decade or more. So take that as you will.

The introduction of remote viewing into the Suspect Zero scenario, along with the rather unique basis for the avenging former agent’s crusade, provides an interesting twist to what is otherwise a pretty standard police procedural/crime drama film. It will be fascinating to see just how remote viewing is utilized in the film, and exactly how the retired FBI man goes about tracking his Suspect Zero. The plot also raises an interesting question: How does a law enforcement officer resolve the conundrum of trying to prevent the murder of a serial killer who has taken the lives of so many innocents? At what point does the crisis of conscience that must inevitably arise in those who seek to protect the innocent and punish the guilty nudge those on the side of the law over that thin line between upholding the statute and seeing justice served, which in an increasingly complex modern society are not necessarily the same thing? If Suspect Zero concentrates more on these aspects of its story rather than the mundane how’s-he-gonna-catch-the-bad-guy elements, the film could be a thought-provoking, mature offering during its time in the theatres. (Stephanie Star Smith/BOP)

Vital statistics for Suspect Zero
Main Cast Aaron Eckhart, Carrie-Anne Moss, Ben Kingsley, Harry J. Lennix
Supporting Cast Frank Collison, Kevin Chamberlin, William Mapother, Brady Coleman, Ed Dames, Nicole DeHuff, Aaron Donahue, Chloe Russell
Director E. Elias Merhige
Screenwriter Zak Penn, Billy Ray
Trailer Click Here for Trailer
Official Site
Rating R
Running Time 100 minutes
Screen Count 1,500
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture

Comparison films for Suspect Zero
Adjusted Opening
Total BO
Adjusted Total
Se7en 9/22/9513.95 19.33 2441 5715.00 7620.0 100.12 138.78 7.18
Twelve Monkeys 1/5/9613.84 18.88 1533 9028.00 11846.7 57.14 77.95 4.10
Silence of the Lambs * 2/15/9113.77 19.72 1497 9198.00 12671.8 130.73 187.24 9.39
Fallen 1/16/989.15 11.76 2448 3738.00 4622.7 25.49 32.77 2.45
Stir of Echoes, A 9/10/995.81 6.92 1888 3077.00 3513.1 21.13 25.18 3.64



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