Against my better judgment, I found myself enjoying writer-director Robert Gaston’s detective thriller 2 Minutes Later.
Yes, the movie is awful. The acting is terrible, the sound quality is poor, the camera work is lazy and the script thinks it’s much wittier than it actually is.
Yet the film is not camp. Some of the worst scenes positively drip with an aura of seriousness which only makes them more tragically entertaining.
For all that the film tries to be a hard-boiled detective thriller, the plot is ludicrously straightforward.
Star erotic photographer Ken (Michael Molina) is murdered by a guy whose picture he accidentally took (although this is the central mystery of the film, it is blown in the first minute). When Ken doesn’t turn up for work, his manager hires smokin’ hot lesbian private eye Abigail Marks (Jessica Graham) to track him down.
Meanwhile, Ken’s shy identical twin brother Michael shows up for a surprise visit and takes the opportunity to pass as the more popular Ken as a way of boosting his self-confidence. Abigail ends up enlisting Michael to smoke out Ken, who everyone assumes is just on vacation somewhere.
Unfortunately, when the pair get down to doing their detective work, they reveal how completely ill-suited they are to the task. They chase all the wrong leads, throw themselves and others pointlessly into danger, and fail to contact the police once they know the truth. Only the killer comes across more incompetent, in the climactic showdown.
This is a film that fails in everything it sets out to do: the mystery is so simple a five-year-old could solve it, the jokes fall flat because they only work if you assume the detectives have the mental abilities of a four-year-old, and even the repeated full frontal shots and sex scenes are unerotic.
And yet, the failure is so spectacular that it’s just a fun ride. And at only 68 minutes, it moves at a clip that won’t leave you bored. A mild endorsement for those who enjoy the odd bad movie.