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4.5 2
Director: Rowan Woods

Cast: Forest Whitaker, Kate Beckinsale, Guy Pearce


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In the aftermath of a gruesome restaurant murder, the survivors of the attack are left to ponder their own mortality and how it relates to their connection to society. Forest Whitaker, Guy Pearce, Kate Beckinsale, and Dakota Fanning headline


In the aftermath of a gruesome restaurant murder, the survivors of the attack are left to ponder their own mortality and how it relates to their connection to society. Forest Whitaker, Guy Pearce, Kate Beckinsale, and Dakota Fanning headline Little Fish director Rowan Woods' adaptation of Roy Freirich's debut novel.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
It's official -- the multi-linear, nonchronological narrative film, so recently praised as the pinnacle of Hollywood innovation, has been successfully depleted of its ingenuity, and now seems to be settling harmlessly into the realm of genre. Fragments, the first American film from Australian director Rowan Woods, is a paint-by-numbers entry into the field that features benign examples of most of the essential cinematic elements of this rapidly stagnating style. A confusing opening scene, which eventually gains coherence through repeated flashbacks with additional information revealed, depicts an act of violence (in this case, a shooting in a diner) that temporarily unites a group of strangers, played by an ensemble cast. After the event, the survivors diverge and enter into clearly delineated systems of grief -- Anne (Dakota Fanning) gives her life to God, Carla (Kate Beckinsale) tries to calm her constantly crying baby, Charlie (Forest Whitaker) parlays his luck into a casino trip, Jimmy (Josh Hutcherson) stops speaking. The only character who threatens to become interesting is Dr. Laraby (Guy Pearce), who tests the threshold between medicine and poison by secretly dosing his wife with prescription drugs. The rest are defined solely by their rigid reactions to the tragedy, and their patterned behavior seems to eclipse any thoughtful consideration of the purportedly random nature of the shooting. While the plotlines intersect at times, the separate stories remain oddly quarantined, since each cast member is so locked into his or her own trajectory that there is no opportunity for the characters to modify each other's behavior. Whatever surprises the film offers are based solely on information artificially withheld from the audience, rather than changes that arise spontaneously through the interactions of the characters. The final revelation, which involves a bodily fluid, should be as embarrassing for the filmmakers as it would have been for the character involved, and the fact that a film about a horrific shooting relies on a gun as a catalyst for the climax is problematic, to say the least. The questionable story elements are further weakened by stale stylistic choices, such as the aforementioned repetition of the opening scene, a fluttering musical score that strives to deepen the film's significance, and a denouement featuring a voice-over that uses a literary passage to neatly recap the intended meaning of the film. Woods and his crew can be commended for the benevolence of their subject matter, and 20 years ago, their film would likely have been hailed for its creative vision, but in the wake of Magnolia, 21 Grams, and Crash, Fragments is nothing more than a disappointing example of a once-marginal type of film that has become decidedly mainstream.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Sony Pictures
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Closed Caption; Includes director's commentary

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Forest Whitaker Charlie
Kate Beckinsale Carla
Guy Pearce Dr. Laraby
Dakota Fanning Anne
Josh Hutcherson Jimmy
Jennifer Hudson Kathy
Jackie Earle Haley Bob
Jeanne Tripplehorn Doris
Embeth Davidtz Joan
Troy Garity Ron

Technical Credits
Rowan Woods Director
Nicole Abellera Casting
Gilbert Alloul Executive Producer
Max Biscoe Production Designer
Devesh Chetty Executive Producer
Naomi Despres Executive Producer
Eric Edwards Cinematographer
John Flock Executive Producer
Roy Freirich Co-producer,Screenwriter
Robyn Gardiner Executive Producer
Mary Claire Hannan Costumes/Costume Designer
John Kelly Co-producer
Jeanne McCarthy Casting
Meg Reticker Editor
Robert Salerno Producer
Lewin Webb Executive Producer
Marcelo Zarvos Score Composer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Fragments
1. Chapter 1 [7:43]
2. Chapter 2 [6:47]
3. Chapter 3 [7:44]
4. Chapter 4 [7:10]
5. Chapter 5 [5:35]
6. Chapter 6 [9:00]
7. Chapter 7 [10:50]
8. Chapter 8 [4:46]
9. Chapter 9 [6:13]
10. Chapter 10 [6:02]
11. Chapter 11 [5:45]
12. Chapter 12 [9:39]


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Fragments 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Grady1GH More than 1 year ago
FRAGMENTS (AKA Winged Creatures) is an uncomfortable movie: the subject matter of spontaneous unsuspected violence and the subsequent impact on the lives of those who survive a near death situation is terrifying. FRAGMENTS takes a moment in time and then reveals how that moment alters the psyche and behavior of numerous people from children to adults. It is disconcerting to watch, but at the same time it makes us face the possibilities of how isolated cracks in the universe can alter our lives. As the tagline suggests 'You have to lose your way to find it.' The film opens with a day in a Los Angeles diner where a gunman enters and randomly opens fire on the customers at the tables and the staff serving them and then kills himself. We are forced to watch this happen but through the eyes of the people attempting to dodge the attack. Among these are a waitress (Kate Beckinsale), a man seated at the counter being denied attention as he glances at his new brochures on dealing with cancer (Forest Whitaker), a doctor (Guy Pearce), a young girl (Dakota Fanning) who witnesses the murder of her father, a young boy (Josh Hutcherson) whose terror results in his becoming mute, among others. The film then abruptly clips to the fragments that remain - the lives as being lived by the survivors as well as their families - a cast of brilliant cameos by Jeanne Tripplehorn, Jackie Earle Haley, Robin Weigert, Jennifer Hudson and Embeth Davidtz. While none of the characters seem to be people about whom we would care under normal circumstances, the fact that the writer and director (Roy Freier and Rowan Woods) have placed us in the midst of the initial incident allows us to watch the strange transformations that happen to these people as a result of being struck by post traumatic stress - maladaptive behavior toward spouses and children, hiding behind becoming an instant religious zealot, gambling as a disease, and the other splinters the impact of murder and suicide observed at close range can cause. Very little is resolved by film's end but the film does force us to witness something that could happen to any of us and make us re-evaluate our values and abilities to cope with trauma. This is an ensemble cast film, strongly projected, and if the producers and creators of the film merely allowed us more time to get to know each character better the film probably would have been a success in the theaters instead of going straight to DVD. A provocative work. Grady Harp