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Do Not Disturb
cast: William Hurt, Jennifer Tilly, Denis Leary, and Francesca Brown

director: Dick Maas

95 minutes (15) 1999
Mosaic VHS rental
Also available to rent or buy on DVD
[released 12 August]

RATING: 7/10
reviewed by Donald Morefield
From the director of enjoyably demented psycho-thriller Amsterdamned (1988), this quirky black comedy thriller offers above standard entertainment with three Hollywood stars in European settings.
   The Richmond family, Walter and Cathryn (William Hurt and Meg Tilly) visit Amsterdam to close a business deal, before seeing the watery sights as American tourists. Their young daughter Melissa (Francesca Brown) is mute and gets lost outside the hotel, where she witnesses the murder of a lawyer which involves the man her father is about to sign a contract with. Brilliantly slapdash cat 'n' mouse antics ensue, as the almost incompetent hitman on the job fails repeatedly to find and kill the resourceful Melissa.
   Canal tramp with a heart of gold, Simon (Denis Leary), tries to help but has to keep away from the local cops. A series of amusingly deadpan absurdities result in a delightful mixing of homicidal action and equally savage humour, and there's a whole sequence in the hotel's elevator that recalls this director's techno-horror, The Lift (1983). Tilly provides a touch of glamour, Hurt coasts along by means of his usual star quality, while the best that can be said of the slightly precocious kid is that she manages not to annoy us at all. Indeed, her part in this type of picture could so easily have been quite irritating, but Dick Maas skilfully avoids the kind of tedious sentimentality that US filmmakers would bring to any child-in-danger story.
   If you're not in an especially demanding mood, Do Not Disturb is well worth the rental price.