Assume Nothing

Barbie Castro in Assumed Killer (2013)

On the way back from her mother-in-law's funeral, reporter Daria Valdez Morrow (Barbie Castro) is involved in a car crash caused by her arguing with her husband Sam (Casper Van Dien - 500 MPH Storm) who was driving. After waking from a coma it becomes clear that Daria is suffering from amnesia and not only doesn't recognize Sam but doesn't even know her name. But as she tries to piece her life back together with the help of Sam she begins to remember some things and after listening in to a suspicious conversation which Sam is having on the phone she begins to suspect that may be her husband is the serial killer she had been investigating prior to the accident.

Sometimes you see a movie on the TV schedule and you spot some familiar names and think well it is worth a chance. Well that is how I came to watch "Assumed Killer" as I spotted the familiar names of Casper Van Dien, Armand Assante, Eric Roberts and William R. Moses amongst many names which frankly I didn't know. But as I already knew; familiar names don't make a good movie on their own and as "Assumed Killer" proves doesn't mean good performances either as Casper Van Dien made me laugh with constant over acting.

Casper Van Dien in Assumed Killer (2013)

Now in fairness the blame can't solely be place on Casper Van Dien's shoulders as other actors deliver equally stiff, unconvincing performances whilst the script also features some terrible dialogue. The cheesiness of the dialogue is heightened by director Bernard Salzmann's melodramatic directing style which uses sweeping but forgettable music to try and create atmosphere. It makes the set up of "Assumed Killer" feel like it is trying to be like "The Vow" with Sam being really understanding as he takes Daria home and tries not to make her feel uncomfortable whilst inevitably leading to big romantic scenes as they have some special moments.

This eventually leads me to the plot and in fairness the plot is the best thing about the movie as Daria sets about working on a case she was researching involving a serial killer prior to the accident. The fact she begins to suspect Sam of being the killer of course throws up plenty of possibilities whether or not he is or isn't and the storyline explores some of the potential which the story has. The thing is that "Assumed Killer" is of course one thing and that is predictable in narrative so that even if you can't guess who the killer is you will know that at some point Daria will be in danger most likely because of someone she knows and there will be a climactic ending.

What this all boils down to is that "Assumed Killer" whilst having a reasonable storyline also has many of the problems which cause TV movies to be frequently mocked. Over doing romance, cheesy dialogue, wooden acting all end up taking away from the potential of the storyline to leave a movie struggling to be average.

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