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23's Rhona Mitra Balances a Faulty Equation
by Luz Hernandez

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She can play nice, but watch out!  This girl's feisty.

She can play nice, but watch out! This girl's feisty.
Rhona Mitra is a slap across the face of Joel Schumacher's new psychological thriller, The Number 23. And I don't mean that in a bad way. It's a merciful slap--the kind you'd give your best friend if he suddenly lost his mind and started spewing out nonsensical absurdities--and comes at a point in the film when the viewer has become hopelessly entangled in a labyrinth of loose ends and far-fetched explanations.

Without warning, like the smack of a ruler-wielding Catholic school nun who's just caught you dozing off at the back of the room, Mitra jumps onto the screen with an explosive, albeit brief,
He's gonna need a female to figure this one out.

He's gonna need a female to figure this one out.
performance that demands your undivided attention.

It's not just her good looks and loud yelling that steal the show, though. There's plenty of that to be found elsewhere in the film. What makes Mitra stand out (besides her decidedly sexy British accent) is the way she convincingly portrays Laura Tollins' cruel indifference towards Walter Sparrow (played by Jim Carrey). She doesn't just hurl insults at him--she looks him straight in the eye and lets him know exactly what she feels. It's real. So real, in fact, that for a split-second you actually pity the guy.

But a split-second's not
One bad motha...

One bad motha...
enough to get a solid reading of this girl's potential, and neither are the minor roles she's landed in movies and television (Highwaymen, The Life of David Gale, The Practice, Boston Legal, Nip/Tuck).

Fortunately, though, we'll have plenty of opportunities to get to know Rhona Mitra better in the near future. She will be starring as an FBI agent in the upcoming Shooter, with Mark Wahlberg (opening March 23), and as the mother of a half-human, half-bloodthirsty wolfish creature in Skinwalkers (opening March 30). If she was flaming in 23, imagine how hot she'll be when you give her a gun and take away her kid.

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Other Columns
Other columns by Luz Hernandez:

A Battle of Wills: Arnett & Forte Duke It Out

Catalina Sandino Morales, Pure and Simple

Rai: Indian Warya Princess

Jason Statham: A Job Well Done

When Beauty Prevails

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Luz Hernandez
Luz Hernandez is a devoted movie watcher with a background in creative writing and translation.

If you have a comment, question, or suggestion, you can send a message to Luz Hernandez by clicking here.

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