17 March 2005 | film-critic
By the 5ifth day I was bored...
I thought that I had a better review for this mini-series, but it looks like I may have shut it away in the trash vault. So, for just this one I am going to give you the short, short version of what I witnessed. 5ive Days to Midnight was one of those classic mini-series that probably did very well while on television in keeping the suspense high and the anticipation even higher, but when it transferred onto DVD it didn't succeed as well. When one has the opportunity to watch this series from beginning to end within the course of one day, the excitement and momentum slowly decreases. Let me be more exact.
The first three episodes were great. It was this beautifully mixed bag of drama and sci-fi that I know the Sci-Fi channel has a firm grip on. It kept me guessing and wondering what would happen next. I couldn't quite figure out exactly how all the pieces were going to fit together and it was enjoyable, then you put the second disc in and watch the final two episodes and everything going for this film goes down the toilet. The final two episodes are nothing but filler and the ironically planned confusing ending. I felt that these final two episodes just did not react well with the first three, there seemed to be something genuinely missing from all of this. It was as if the creators had the horse running at full speed at first, then allowed it to gallop into the final lap. It lost momentum, speed, and thrill when the second disc hit my DVD player.
The acting was decent with Quaid proving why the "TV" niche is his best friend. Hutton could have done a bit better, portraying this struggling victim to this predestined crime, but instead I think he realized this was "television" and went with some sub-par skills. While the acting was just average all around, I was o.k. with that, it was the story that I was hoping to get most of my strength from. Sadly, the story was good, but not great. There were huge, gaping plot holes that just were never covered or corrected. When you are doing a time traveling film like this, you need this to make a coherent statement. It is like writing a paper without using any punctuation, you don't know where to stop or end and it ends up a jumbled mess. That is what happened with the final two episodes, the jumbled mess caught up to the creators and there was only one way to stop it
clichés and unoriginality.
Overall, I was impressed to begin this series, but by the end, I had lost it completely. The fourth day is nothing but filler, and that set the mood well off for the final day. What began as this very interesting time travel drama/murder/mystery eventually turned into a regular program that you could find on any station. Something happened, and as we the viewers may never know, those involved do. I suggest to everyone checking out the first disc while leaving the second behind. If you need to know how it ends, forget about it. The first three days will leave a better taste in your mouth than the final two days, and overall you will feel better (even if you don't know how it ends!)
Grade: *** out of *****