THE 25TH HOUR (Spike Lee) stars Edward Norton as a yuppie drug dealer who's got 24 hours to get his life in order before a seven-year prison term. Lee's latest is a journey through post-9/11 New York - bitter and over-caffeinated - structured as a series of acting confrontations between Norton, Barry Pepper and Philip Seymour Hoffman, which makes the picture a moody feast for connoisseurs of tremendous young actors. The surprise is Pepper - best known as the sniper in Saving Private Ryan - as a young Wall Street shark, and he more than holds his own with Norton and Hoffman. As often happens with Lee, the thematic overlay (9/11) has nothing to do with the narrative elements, though I'd rather sit through one of Lee's jangly, 19-ideas-shooting-off-at-once pictures than a piece of tony literary restraint like The Hours. 134 min.
25TH HOUR (Spike Lee)
Spike Lee' s second movie about white people and the New York experience (Summer Of Sam was the first), 25th Hour also offers one of the first films explicitly about life in post-9/11 NYC. Edward Norton plays a middle-class drug dealer trying to fill up his last day before he goes to prison while re-evaluating his life and desperately trying to figure out how to get out of the whole prison thing. With Rosario Dawson, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Anna Paquin. 134 minutes. Rating: NNNN