The Bone Collector

Bomb Rating: 

Oh, how I longed to be that finger. God only knows where that damn thing has been.

I feel obliged to give this film the finger, since that's exactly what it did to me and every other viewer who saw it. That finger is owned and operated by Lincoln Rhyme (Denzel Washington), a NYC detective specializing in forensics who's injured on the job and paralyzed from the neck down, except for one finger, which he uses to operate a variety of computer equipment.

This is the same finger that policewoman Amelia Donaghy (Angelina Jolie) fondles once she gets to know Rhyme. Predictably, at the end of the film, when we assume they're "together", she fondles said finger some more. Oh, how I longed to be that finger. God only knows where that damn thing has been.

Anyway, the increasing proximity of Donaghy to Rhyme's finger occurs because they begin working a case together. Since Rhyme is stuck in bed, he teaches Donaghy how to be a good forensic detective and she works the case they're trying to solve together. Some nut is killing people in unusual ways and leaving postmortem clues for the cops to discover.

Another way this film gives us the finger is by its focus on Rhyme's commanding officer, Capt. Howard Cheney (Michael Rooker). Cheney doesn't like Rhyme or his heroics, and at some point Donaghy says about the murders, "It looks like a cop could have done this." Since Cheney walks around scowling like an alligator with a bowel obstruction, we're supposed to think, "Oh, it must be Cheney." Of course, that only leaves two options: It is Cheney, or it isn't Cheney. The film thus ends with either a complete surprise (which means all the scenes with Cheney were pointless) or a completely insipid resolution. I won't say which, even though you shouldn't even care by the time you learn the answer.

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