While some of the material here is rather fetching (as are many of the film’s performers, such as female co-stars Zoe Saldana and Mya), a lot of the film’s “serious” dialogue is about as laughably dull and one-dimensional as the paintings one would find at a church-sponsored art show. Worse still, the movie relies on too many cameos in order to keep its audience from falling asleep, to wit a number of urban stars (Marla Gibbs, Jasmine Guy, Method Man, Terrence J, Leon) pop up just to give the movie the “Street Cred” it obviously thinks it needs in order to sell itself to the audience it’s already aimed at. Irene Tsu also shows up for a scene, as does a surprisingly still-living Ed Asner, who appears for a few short seconds just to give the film a little “AARP Cred” with the old white people who still say things like “them colored folk.”
Had he been able to go back and revisit his work, auteur Dennis Cooper might have been able to improve what is destined to become benign, mid-afternoon BET fodder. Of course, he very well may have revisited his film during the five years it took to get released — so perhaps The Heart Specialist suffers from over-practicing, or, as some people may call it: George Lucas Syndrome. I can’t say for certain. Nor can I confess to caring, either — and I’m surely not the only one: Fox Home Entertainment, who shuffled this title onto Blu-ray and DVD, gave the film adequate A/V aspects, but the release’s sole special features are a few additional scenes and a shitload of previews.
And no, none of those previews are for Jackie Chan movies.