Picks and Pans Review: Close Your Eyes

UPDATED 05/03/2004 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 05/03/2004 at 01:00 AM EDT

Goran Visnjic, Shirley Henderson, Miranda Otto, Paddy Considine

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A female cop in London visits a hypnotist to stop smoking. When he puts her into a trance, both see a disturbing vision of a possibly dead girl floating in water. The cop (Henderson) enlists the hypnotist (Visnjic) to help her track down a killer who has been preying on children, ritualistically draining them of their blood.

Although it may sound gruesome (and is indeed that in its final scenes), Close Your Eyes is an intelligently crafted, psychologically complex thriller in which suspense keeps building. The hypnotist has secrets of his own that are only slowly revealed. It is an indication of this movie's concern for its characters rather than bloody special effects that it spends as much time delving into the hypnotist's sometimes tense relationship with his pregnant wife (Otto) as it does having him hunt for the killer. Visnjic, who has shown himself to be an accomplished brooder as Dr. Luka Kovac on TV's ER, effectively dips into the same dark pool of self-loathing and depression here. (R)

HORROR THRILLER

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