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Telling Lies (DVD Review)

25 May, 2008 By: Matt Miller

Telling Lies

Prebook 5/27/08; Street 6/24/08
Echo Bridge
$14.99 DVD
Rated ‘R' for language and some violence.
Stars Melanie Brown, Jason Flemyng, Kelly Stables, Jenna Harrison.

In the British psychological thriller Telling Lies, Melanie Brown (aka Scary Spice) takes center stage as Det. Maggie Thomas, who is investigating a teenage girl's role in the death of a young man named Vincent.

The troubled youth is Faith (Harrison), who has just returned to her snooty private school, following her mother's apparent suicide, to find her best friend, Portia, dating her boyfriend, Derek. Heartbroken and angry, she begins acting out at school and befriends Eve (Stables), a brash, fiery girl who fuels Faith's growing self-destructive side.

The pair spend time ditching school and coming up with ways to torment Portia and Derek. But Faith is still not over her ex, so Eve convinces her to create a phony boyfriend to make Derek jealous. Together they fabricate a relationship between Faith and a guy named Vincent, including fake love letters and altered photos of the happy couple.

The plan seems to work until Faith's imaginary beau turns out to be a real person who was brutally murdered in a hotel room. Conveniently, Eve disappears just as the body surfaces, leaving a trail of evidence that leads right to Faith. While the police are convinced that Faith is a psychopathic killer who made up Eve, the only one who still believes her is Det. Thomas, who goes out of her way, against her colleagues' wishes, to find out the truth behind Eve and the murder.

Telling Lies is a smart, suspenseful teen thriller, along the lines of Swimfan and Abandon, that comes to life thanks to its dynamic cast, notably Harrison and Stables.

Of course, the big draw is Mel B, who is back in the spotlight after making it to the finals of the fifth season of “Dancing With the Stars” and is fresh off the Spice Girls' reunion tour. Her star power alone will draw crowds of all ages — and they won't be disappointed. While the film is teen-friendly, it's gripping enough to hold adults' attention as well.

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