Identity: what is going on here and who are all these people?
The film Identity was released in the already relatively distant 2003, so today it can be considered a kind of classic. In fact, it deserves the title of a cult suspense thriller and from the first minutes fascinates with the atmosphere in the style of detectives Agatha Christie, whose famous work titled “10 Little Indians” was the focus of the filmmakers.
Director John Mangold was not afraid to shoot a picture, which takes place in the confined space of a roadside hotel, although already in the early 2000s this technique seemed rather hackneyed and well-worn. However, a film with the most banal plot can be shot in such a way that it will sparkle with new colors and again make viewers believe in the reality of what is happening, and a project with an incredibly original script can be turned into something too cluttered, overly eccentric and difficult to understand. “Identification” is exactly the first option.
How can a person with dissociative personality disorder be proven innocent?
Dissociative personality disorder is an extremely rare disease, but it still exists. It is so peculiar and unusual that it invariably arouses the interest of psychiatrists and ordinary people. As a rule, such a “fragmentation” of one person into several, as if coexisting in his body, occurs due to severe emotional trauma or neglected mental illness. According to statistics, about 1% of the world’s population suffers from real dissociative personality disorder, according to other sources – only 0.1%.
This information is necessary in order to understand Dr. Malik’s behavior. Dr. Malik, a psychiatrist working with Malcolm Rivers, has a unique opportunity to diagnose, investigate, and perhaps even find some way to treat a person with dissociative personality disorder. In other words, he was lucky to meet such a patient, which most other doctors cannot boast of. And even the fact that the patient turned out to be a murderer under investigation does not detract from the significance of this finding. Dr. Malik truly believes that Rivers can simply be rid of the most aggressive part of his personality, and is trying with all his might to help him avoid the death penalty.
If you have already watched this film, then such a sharp transition from talking about a suspense thriller in a confined space to the attachment of some doctor to some patient there should not surprise you. If you have not watched it yet, then at this point you should probably stop reading and first of all get acquainted with this film project yourself. Otherwise, its denouement will not be as intriguing for you as it could be.
# 9: Susan Caroline
So, as you probably already guessed, we intend to consider all the personalities that live in the body of Malcolm Rivers, in the order of their death and according to the numbers that the “maniac” subsequently left next to their corpses. The first in the film is Susan Caroline (or Susan Carolina, since the names of all the characters are the names of the states). Played by Rebecca De Mornay, this girl is a well-known and narcissistic actress, and dies in the most commonplace way: the “maniac” kills her when she wanders the street near the hotel in an attempt to pick up a cellular signal.
# 8: Lou Isiana
Actor William Lee Scott, who is not well known to the general public, took on this character. Lou just married his girlfriend because she announced her pregnancy, and while at the main location of the movie “Identification” learned that she was lying. It is difficult to say how aggressive Lou is under normal conditions, since for such a situation he behaves quite naturally: he gets angry and starts pounding on the bathroom door, in which his wife closed from him. However, he still does not have time to get to her.
# 7: George York
George Yorke was played by the public’s favorite John McGinley, best known for his role as Dr. Cox in the cult TV series Clinic. However, his character in this film is very far from the caustic sarcastic, but nonetheless incredibly gifted doctor. George is a quiet, calm and not too confident man who is in shock that his wife was seriously injured in an accident and is now about to die. He himself dies, crushed by Larry’s pickup truck, when he saves his stepson Timmy from the same fate. In the context of the final events of the film, the fact that the boy stood and looked at the car moving directly in his direction does not seem so strange.
# 6: Alice York
George’s wife was played by Leila Kensle, who starred, for the most part, in TV series, and as her main work considers family and marriage psychotherapy practice. Alice dies shortly after her husband, and all the time before that she does not speak many words to make a clear idea of her personality. It can only be stated unequivocally that she loves her son and, probably, has warm feelings for her husband.
# 5: Ginny Isiana
Ginny, the very girl who tricked her boyfriend into marrying herself, was played by Clea Duvall. By nature, Ginny is quite nervous, she is one of those on whom the current situation exerts the greatest psychological pressure. When the number of deaths in the motel reaches four, she decides to try to leave with Timmy, but the car explodes as soon as Ginny starts the engine. Here comes the turning point of the film: the characters pay attention to the fact that the corpses of the dead people have mysteriously disappeared somewhere. Soon after, it turns out that they were all born on the same day (albeit in different years), and their surnames are the names of the states. Then there is the first release of the internal personalities of Rivers outside: more precisely, one personality of the character of John Cusack.
# 4: Larry Washington
The role of Larry went to John Hawkes. The story of Washington is more like a fiction: a month before what happened, he lost in a casino, accidentally stumbled upon this hotel, the owner of which was killed, and decided to take his place. Moreover, the latter was called the same – Larry. This character is rather shy and hysterical, does not always know how to think adequately and is capable of reckless actions. The viewer says goodbye to him when he is shot by Samuel Rhodes.
# 3: Samuel Rhodes
Ray Liott’s character leads others by the nose throughout the film, posing as a police officer, when in fact he is a criminal. Samuel Rhodes cold-bloodedly killed the law enforcement officer who was transporting him along with another prisoner in a company car, and then took his place. Obviously, Samuel is one of the darkest personalities in Malcolm’s entire projection system. He is killed by Edward Dakota’s bullets.
# 2: Edward Dakota
Ed, played by John Cusack, is the embodiment of Rivers’ conscience. He left the police because he could not dissuade a pregnant Mexican woman with AIDS from committing suicide. Nevertheless, he did not leave old habits, and the whole film tries to help others and find out who the killer is. Ed is also killed in a shootout with Rhodes, just minutes after him.
# 1: Paris Nevada
Oddly enough, it is the former prostitute who turns out to be one of the most humane, morally stable and ready for anything characters. Yes, she periodically breaks down and falls into hysterics, but in general, she can be called the most stress-resistant woman in a motel and one of the most stress-resistant characters in general (after, perhaps, Ed). She dies when the identity of the “maniac” is finally established.
Towards the end of the story, we learn that all the murders that turned out to be on the account of Malcolm Rivers were committed by his most, at first glance, innocent alter ego – the modest silent baby Timmy. However, at the end of the film, he is not silent. He quite confidently declares that “Whores are not given a second chance”, and this phrase he shares in half with Rivers himself, attacking Dr. Malik in an attempt to strangle him.
We can say that absolutely everything is thought out and appropriate in this film. Quite frankly, it would have looked good even if it had been a flat story in the format of “10 Indians”. But the revealed truth that all this is happening in the mind of one person adds a special peppercorn to him and makes him a real classic.