|50 Cent and Chance Crawford/still of "Twelve"/photo by Alex Wenk|
“Twelve,” the Joel Schumacher-directed screen adaptation of Nick McDonell’s “controversial best-selling novel,” to quote the film’s production notes, sinks under the weight of its pretensions, beginning with the first words uttered by its omniscient narrator, Kiefer Sutherland. Introducing the main character, White Mike (Chace Crawford of “Gossip Girl,” painfully miscast), a drug dealer to rich and disaffected youth living on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, Mr. Sutherland affects the insinuating, too-cool-to-be-ruffled tone of a latter-day Humphrey Bogart, minus the vocal gravel.
That soft-boiled voice, dripping with jaded sarcasm, immediately establishes “Twelve” as the latest book-to-screen titillation in a genre that wallows in the sophisticated travails of the kind of rich, potty-mouthed lost youth familiar from Bret Easton Ellis’s “Less Than Zero.” Mr. McDonell’s wisp of a novel (his first), written when he was 17 and published in 2002, reads much better on the page than it translates into a movie.
(click here to read the full review on the NY Times website)