Movie Review: ‘Spiral’

Posted 6/11/21

Chris Rock and Samuel L. Jackson star in “Spiral,” the latest installment in the “Saw” horror series.

At a carnival, a police detective, Detective Marv Boswick (Dan …

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Movie Review: ‘Spiral’


Chris Rock and Samuel L. Jackson star in “Spiral,” the latest installment in the “Saw” horror series.

At a carnival, a police detective, Detective Marv Boswick (Dan Petronijevic) witnesses a purse snatching and pursues the escaping suspect down a manhole into a tunnel. Knocked unconscious, he wakes up tied to a step ladder over a train track.

A masked person’s voice on a TV screen offers him a gruesome option to save himself rather than be hit by the oncoming train.

Cut to a hotel room, where Detective Zeke Banks (Rock) debating with his colleagues about the nobility of Tom Hanks’ character in “Forest Gump,” before they don masks and hold up another room full of drug dealers. He is then arrested as he singlehandedly delivers the gang to the police.

Banks is chastised by his boss Captain Angie Garza (Marisol Nichols) because he didn’t get any backup.

“There’s no backup because there’s no one on the force I can trust,” he replies. Banks recalls how 12 years earlier he turned in a dirty cop, getting a medal and a bullet.

His father, Marcus (Jackson) was a legendary chief of detectives.

He is partnered with William Schenk (Max Minghella).

“How do you take your coffee in the morning?” Schenk asks.


“Your father is the reason I’m here.”

“Well I’m not him. Prepare to be underwhelmed.”

A voice on a flash drive delivered to Zeke talks about how a member of the police department will suffer. Another box at where the video was filmed contains

Boswick’s badge. The detectives assume it is a copycat of the Jigsaw serial killer. It turns out that Boswick and Zeke were close friends. Garza reluctantly assigns Zeke to lead the case.

When Zeke returns to his apartment, someone is already inside. He pulls his gun only to find that it is Marcus.

“How’d you get in here?” Zeke asks.

“Did you forget who owns the building?”

“Even renters have rights.”

“You pay rent, you’ll get some rights.”

Couriers keep delivering Tiffany boxes with flash drives containing enigmatic videos.

The film follows Zeke as he tries to find the murderer. I’m not a huge fan of gory movies, but I am a huge fan of Chris Rock, who is not only a gifted comedian, but also a talented actor and director, as well as Samuel L. Jackson, one of the best actors in the world. The chemistry between them is palpable. The best part of the film is Mr. Rock’s sarcastic world-weary rambling. He adds new dimension and subtlety to the hard-boiled police detective.


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