Zipper Blu-ray Review
I’ve never had an addiction that has caused me to lose focus at work, causing me to leave my duties to seek out the perfect thing to fix my craving. That happens to Sam Ellis (Wilson) though. He’s an up and coming federal prosecutor who eyes a greater prize, a powerful political position. His addiction is sex and his antidote is prostitutes, or for a lighter term, escorts. But like many addicts, Ellis wasn’t always like this.
An intern, who appears to be attracted to him, sets off this unscrupulous desire. His interest in porn spawns an interest in calling a phone service that sets him up with attractive women. The first time is a rush, lengthy and fulfilling. But like most abusers, he has to have more. Soon he’s making up fake errands to run so he can bail on his wife. And soon, just as I said above, it’s escaping an important meeting about his upcoming election.
ZIPPER works much better as an erotic thriller than it does a political thriller. The fact that Ellis is a man of the law looking to be a man who writes the law is just coincidence. The steam of the sex in this movie works no matter what Sam’s profession is. It’s more entertaining watching this man run around from ATM to ATM with fake phones as he heads to a hotel to do the deed. ZIPPER doesn’t have anything interesting to say about sex and politics, but it does have something interesting to say about the evils of addiction.
By the time Ellis has been caught, he hasn’t learned his lesson, and won’t. It appears that cheating on his wife and paying for sex is more of a common daily routine, than a scandalous weekend fling. Patrick Wilson’s turns in a great performance, almost mirroring the creepiness of his character in HARD CANDY. He hammers home the mannerisms of a man struggling with a new dependency, but really brings it home as he becomes a slimeball. Of course the line between repulsive adulterer and sympathetic junkie are blurred.
The script and direction by Mora Stephens helps Wilson with this one. She manages to make the viewer question his motives, especially when he has much more to lose than to gain with his extracurricular sexual activities. ZIPPER also stops short of painting him with a broad stroke and instead paints him much like drug abusers we’ve seen in TV shows like BREAKING BAD. Stephens seems to understand that absolute hatred makes for a less interesting character.
The one glaring problem that ZIPPER faces is attempting to say something about his political power as well. It attempts this message towards the end, but that message is not clear. ZIPPER is far from perfect, despite the near perfect acting. Some might view ZIPPER as a cross between CALIFORNICATION and HOUSE OF CARDS, but viewing it in that light would be a mistake since it has so much more to say about how anyone can be the victim of their own desires.
Video: (1080p Widescreen 2:39:1) A beautiful blu-ray without any glaring flaws. It’s a fairly dark and dreary movie, so it’s hard to pinpoint some of it’s finer details.
Audio: (English Dolby TrueHD 5.1) The dialogue on this blu-ray is the only problem. It’s hit or miss when people are talking. At times it’s just right and at other times you’re struggling to understand what people are saying.
Audio Commentary with Co-Writer/Director Mora Stephens: Stephens is very detailed with this commentary. She goes over the plot as well as the character of Ellis in-depth. There’s a lot of value to be mined out of everything she talks about.
Deleted Scenes (11:30): This feature has seven deleted scenes that comes with optional commentary by Mora Stephens