Writer-director Michael Cristofer reteams with Angelina Jolie for the first time since her Emmy-winning performance in HBO Films Gia. Unfortunately, neither Cristofer nor Jolie has done as well by the other this time. In Gia, the insertions of post-mortem commentary by friends and family of Gia contributed to Cristofer’s tale of a glittering yet tortured phenomenon who no one could really explain. Original Sin’s main narrative is intercut with the enigmatic and grim narration of Julia (Angelina Jolie) as she awaits execution. Few of her deadpan comments add any real understanding or suspense to the main action. They merely alert us to the fact that things are not what they seem and that someone in addition to Julia will end up badly -- undercutting rather than contributing to any sense of suspense. The tone of Jolie’s flat narration flits from vaguely romantic, to tragic, to melodramatic, to comically ironic -- so the audience is never clear what kind of movie this is.
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