The Little Things

2021 Film Review — A 90s Serial Killer Story

The Little Things Poster


A series of crimes have been committed in Los Angeles (America) involving the killing of young women. A determined cop decides to take the case personally with the assistance of a LASD detective. Together, they try to examine old cases, link with new testimonies, explore new clues and undergo a thorough investigation to get one step closer to the killer who always appears to be one step ahead of them.

Boots — Film Footage


There are three central characters to this film. These include a cop, a detective and a suspect:

  • Joe ‘Deke’ Deacon (Denzel Washington)— A cop who gets temporarily transferred to his former place of work. He is determined to catch the killer.
  • Jim Baxter (Rami Malek) — A detective who has been assigned to identify, locate and capture the killer. He is a family man who wants to stop the series of killings before another family is affected.
  • Albert Sparma (Jared Leto) — The suspected serial killer. He appears to possess symptoms of a mental disorder. His attitude does not help either.
The Little Thing Poster — Actors & Characters


The serious monotoned structure and its dark-isolation moments match the the thematics of the movie. The story takes place in the 1990s. The story was the focal point of the entire film. This means there was a lack of focus and emphasis on the culture of its time. There is actually a reason for this: The script was already made and ready to film in the 90s itself! For one reason or another, it took 30 years for the film to actually start production and finally release. In comparison to its time, this film was considered even before the release of 1995s hit Se7en — A lot of the later serial-killer films tried to emulate its success.

John Lee Hancock (Director/Producer/Writer) / Rami Malek (Jim Baxter)


In brief:

  • This 1990s story takes place in Los Angeles, America.
  • There are three characters who make up the arc of the story.
  • The structure and colouring of the film represented its themes.
  • It was originally suppose to come out in the 1990s.
  • Film was planned before the success of the pinnacle of serial-killer films: Se7en.
Joe ‘Deke’ Deacon (Denzel Washington) — Film Footage


There were high expectations for this film. I enjoyed the story and the feel of the film, but it was not as enjoyable as I would have liked it to be. I was expecting a more complex storyline with a more definitive ending. There was also a slight ambiguity towards the ending as to who actually was the serial killer, creating a moment of doubt, which I did not mind at all. I enjoy these types of endings. As for the rest of the film, the intensity and juice I felt when I watched Se7en simply was not here. It simply did not hook me into its journey of the cop or detective. That being said, the performances by the actors were great, as expected from their calibre.

Jim Baxter (Rami Malek) / Albert Sparma (Jared Leto)


Overall, it was still a decent film to watch, but it is not something I would really watch again. At least, not in the immediate future. Perhaps in my second watch, I would appreciate it more. I did feel slightly feel dozed off during the runtime, so perhaps this might have contributed to the slightly downed review. Whilst there were nowhere near as many plot holes, at least the previous HBO Max film, Wonder Woman 1984, was far more fun and enjoyable:


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Writer. Reader of Novels. Video Gamer. Documentary Watcher. Tech nerd.

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