More than ten years ago, a movie entitled The Words hit the theaters with a resounding glonk. Too bad. It's an excellent depiction of what happens when a masterpiece of writing is purloined by someone who, eventually, just can't live with the guilt. Bradley Cooper is the thief. Jeremy Irons, the victim. It's excellent and will be reviewed later on in this blog.
The Infernal Machine is the same movie . . . almost.
Guy Pearce, getting shorter and seedier by the picture, plays Bruce Cogburn, reclusive author of the masterpiece novel, The Infernal Machine. Cogburn has the most crippling case of writers' block in the history of writers' block. When the movie opens, he is working on a quarter of a century, and a quart a day of hard alcohol.
Twenty-five years into the his intransigence, Cogburn starts receiving letters from a fan and fellow writer, Edward Dukent, who wishes Cogburn to help him with his novel. Cogburn, doing his best imitation of JD Salinger, wants nothing to do with Dukent, who will not give up.
Letters arrive daily, packages too.
Cogburn sets out to find Dukent, through Dukent's cipher, a mass murderer named Dwight Tufford (Alex Pettyfer).
A few red herrings later, including two fake Feds, a faux police officer with great cleavage and some dumpster diving, it turns out Cogburn didn't write the book. That little nugget of information, to which Cogburn finally confesses, looses two psychopaths on his hovel in the middle of East Bumsrush, California, and the general population as well.
The Infernal Machine has received mediocre reviews. Unfair. It is a very good film and all you have to do to appreciate its complexity is pay attention, and to quote Bruce Cogburn, "Dig a little deeper."
Rental on Amazon Prime.