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Scarecrow on Seattle: CRIMES OF THE PAST

For the past few years, Scarecrow Video has been contributing reviews of movies made in the Pacific Northwest to the Seattle Office of Film + Music's e-newsletter. We're now proud to be able to share these reviews on our site as well.






Crimes of the Past (2009)
David Rasche is a welcome face in any film and Crimes of the Past offers the hard working actor a rare leading role in this melancholy spy drama. He plays a CIA agent named Thomas Sparrow who had to abandon his family due to "company business." Years later he returns to Seattle and is tempted to reunite with his grown daughter Josephine (Elisabeth Rohm) but is hesitant due to his espionage-filled past. Josephine is a severe alcoholic in denial who catches up with reality after she backs her car (sporting a KEXP bumper sticker!) into an electrical transformer and knocks out the city's power supply. She ends up having to go to court and hires a lawyer named Kidd Bangs (!!!??) that sends her to a psychologist (portrayed by Eric Roberts) who, remarkably, happens to be old friends with her mysterious father. The film emphasizes the familial elements of the plot as well as Josephine's rehab experiences and is pretty light on intrigue of the secret agent variety. The filmmakers use a lot of quality local landmarks without having the estranged father and daughter stroll through the Pike Place Market. The Seattle cityscape is prominently displayed on the DVD box art as well as in the opening credits. When the vodka guzzling Josephine smacks into the power pole, she's at the corner of Warren Avenue and Ward Street up on Queen Anne with a lovely nighttime view of the city in the background. Also featured in Crimes of the Past is The Seattle Asian Art Museum (called The Seattle Metropolitan Art Museum in the film), Grant Goodeve (most recently of Northwest Backroads fame), the auditorium of the Harvard Exit, The W Hotel, The Halo hair salon, Von's Roast House, Occidental Park, King Street Station, Mount Pleasant Cemetery, The Seattle Municipal Courthouse, and The First Church of Christ Scientist on 16th Avenue (which is currently being converted into fancy condominiums). The film's finale unfolds at the Pioneer Square Station bus tunnel.
--Spenser Hoyt


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