Crime thriller The Little Things brings together three Academy Award winners in Denzel Washington, Rami Malek and Jared Leto and could at one time could have been directed by another one, Steven Spielberg. The Little Things writer John Lee Hancock wrote the initial draft for the movie back in 1993, with the intention for Hollywood icon Steven Spielberg to helm the project.
"Steven really liked A Perfect World, my script for it. And so, before we ever went into production on A Perfect World, he came to me and said, 'Let's do a blind picture deal. ... Let's just do it at Warner Brothers. Something for you to write and meet to direct.' ... So, we started pitching ideas back and forth. I came up on this one, I can't remember exactly when, and fell in love with it. The twists and turns. I wrote a long outline and then talked to him on the phone about it after he read it. And I think I faxed him the outline. ... He really liked it. He said, 'This is really, really good storytelling. It's just too dark for me right now. I'm finishing Schindler's List. I can't live in this dark world again.' And I understood that completely."
Unfortunately, Hancock's plan fell through due to Steven Spielberg coming off the back of the very heavy and highly emotional Schindler's List and wanting to move away from dark stories and onto something a bit lighter. Had Hancock gotten his way, The Little Things would have ended up with a completely different cast (Rami Malek would only have been about 12 years old) but with Spielberg on directing duties it could well have ended up a crime thriller classic.
The Little Things follows Oscar winner Denzel Washington as Deke Craven, a burned-out deputy sheriff with an eye for detail who teams up with Baxter, a crack Los Angeles detective, played by Rami Malek, to reel in a wily serial killer. Deke's nose for the "little things" proves eerily accurate, but his willingness to circumvent the rules embroils Baxter in a soul-shattering dilemma. As they track the killer, Baxter is unaware that the investigation is dredging up echoes of Deke's past, uncovering disturbing secrets that could threaten more than his case.
Directed by Saving Mr. Banks and The Highwaymen's John Lee Hancock, the movie stars Denzel Washington as Kern County Deputy Sheriff Joe "Deke" Deacon, Rami Malek as L.A. Sheriff Department Sergeant Jim Baxter, Jared Leto as Albert Sparma, Sofia Vassilieva as Tina Salvatore, Terry Kinney as Captain Farris, and Michael Hyatt as Flo Dunigan. Additionally, Natalie Morales, Joris Jarsky, Isabel Arraiza, Sheila Houlahan, John Harlan Kim and Tom Hughes also star.
The Little Things has been met with a somewhat mixed response from critics, who have heaped praise on the central performances while finding fault with the movie's failure to add anything overly surprising or original to the genre.
The Little Things was originally due to be released with a traditional theatrical run, but, due to the ongoing global situation, the movie was instead released in the United States on January 29, 2021 by Warner Bros. Pictures and given a month-long simultaneous release on the HBO Max streaming service. This comes to us from Cinemablend.