BN.com Gift Guide

Point of Origin

Overview

Point of Origin, produced by HBO, marks the feature directorial debut of accomplished cinematographer Newton Thomas Sigel (Three Kings, X-Men). The film is based on an actual serial arson investigation that took place in Glendale, CA, in the late '80s and early '90s. Ray Liotta stars in the film as John Orr, a skilled arson investigator with a sixth sense for finding the "point of origin," the place where a fire was started. Orr also has a knack for locating the devices used to start the fires. Keith Lang (John ...
See more details below
Other sellers (DVD)
  • All (14) from $1.99   
  • New (6) from $4.85   
  • Used (8) from $1.99   

Overview

Point of Origin, produced by HBO, marks the feature directorial debut of accomplished cinematographer Newton Thomas Sigel (Three Kings, X-Men). The film is based on an actual serial arson investigation that took place in Glendale, CA, in the late '80s and early '90s. Ray Liotta stars in the film as John Orr, a skilled arson investigator with a sixth sense for finding the "point of origin," the place where a fire was started. Orr also has a knack for locating the devices used to start the fires. Keith Lang (John Leguizamo), his ambitious young protégé, calls Orr "Professor." Orr is stumped by a series of big fires, some fatal, which seem to have been set by the same arsonist. A commission is appointed to investigate the case, headed up by ATF agent Mike Matasso (Colm Feore) and fireman Mike Camello (Cliff Curtis). Orr uses his influence to get Lang appointed to the panel. But Matasso and Orr are immediately at odds with each other, as the ATF man seems to resent Orr's efforts to maintain control of the investigation. Orr is also dealing with his troubled marriage to Wanda (Bai Ling) and is having an affair with the volatile Kate (Illeana Douglas). As he gets deeper into the case, trying to get inside the head of the criminal, Orr begins to worry that the arsonist has some kind of personal involvement with him. Then the commission uncovers a link to an earlier string of fires, and uncovers evidence that the arsonist may actually be a fireman. The actual investigators, Matasso and Camello, have cameos in the film, and Camello also served as one of the film's technical advisors. These events were also the basis for Joseph Wambaugh's book Fire Lover: A True Story.
Read More Show Less

Special Features

Closed Caption; Audio commentary with director Newton Thomas Sigel; Cast & crew bios; Chapter selection; Audio & subtitle selection
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Josh Ralske
Newton Thomas Sigel's Point of Origin is based on a fascinating true story, but Sigel, a respected cinematographer, detracts from the story's impact by emphasizing inappropriately flashy visuals over verisimilitude. The over-the-top style of the film ranges from the frequent scenes that run backwards (somewhat appropriate, as investigators are trying to figure out the crimes' "point of origin") to a cheesily heavy-handed shot of a judge's gavel coming down in slow motion, complete with a jarring sound effect, to a goofily out-of-place fantasy sequence wherein arson investigator John Orr (Ray Liotta) fights off his enemies using moves ripped from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and various Hong Kong shoot-'em-ups. The cast, including Liotta, John Leguizamo, Illeana Douglas, and Colm Feore, is uniformly good, and the actual story being told is astounding. While some of the effects Sigel uses to tell his story (particularly the fire effects) are impressive, it's difficult enough to believe that these incredible events actually happened. In the end, the wild visuals just make the film's connection to reality that much more tenuous.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/20/2003
  • UPC: 026359189623
  • Original Release: 2002
  • Rating:

  • Source: Hbo Home Video
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Alternate Wide Screen (1.78:1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo, Dolby Digital Surround, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: English, Español
  • Time: 1:26:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 43,080

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
John Leguizamo
Ray Liotta
Illeana Douglas
Technical Credits
Newton Thomas Sigel Director
Fred Caruso Producer
John Herzfeld Executive Producer
Cindy Mollo Score Composer
Anthony G. Nakonechnyj Cinematographer
John Ottman Score Composer
Keri Selig Producer
Matthew Tabak Screenwriter
Read More Show Less

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Ablaze [6:56]
2. Establishing Arson [8:30]
3. Promoted to Task Force [5:21]
4. Premier Arson Instructor [5:42]
5. Suspected Inside Job [4:57]
6. Points of Comparison [6:52]
7. Following a Lead [3:04]
8. Extramarital Activities [6:27]
9. Raising Awareness [8:51]
10. Tracking Device [4:10]
11. Novel Approach [6:18]
12. Reading Between the Lines [5:10]
13. Incriminating Evidence [7:25]
14. Guilty as Written [6:10]
Read More Show Less

Menu

Side #1 --
   Play
   Special Features
      Audio Commentary With Director Newton Thomas Sigel
      Cast & Crew Bios
         Ray Liotta - John Orr
         John Leguizamo - Keith Lang
         Illeana Douglas - Kate
         John Herzfeld - Executive Producer
         Newton Thomas Sigel - Director
   Chapters
   Audio
      English 5.1
      English 2.0
      Spanish Stereo
   Subtitles
      English
      Español
      Français
      Subtitles: None
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously