Keanu Reeves does time for ‘Crime’
by Stephen Schaefer
Keanu Reeves was a moving force behind “Henry’s Crime’’ for one reason: “I wanted to do something sincere, not cynical like you see so often these days.”
“I was a part of the production company and this movie from the beginning,” Reeves said. The movie marks his first effort as a hands-on producer and took “probably eight years” of work.
“My partner and I had an idea about a guy,” he explained of Henry, who does the time but didn’t do the crime.
Henry, a mild-mannered toll booth operator, thinks he’s going bowling but is actually the wheelman in a botched bank robbery.
Caught, sentenced and finally out on parole, Henry transforms from passive victim to protagonist when he decides to rob that same bank.
“This is a guy who was kind of on this crossroads, this netherworld of his life, who through the course of the story gets activated,” the 46-year-old actor said, “and then activates everyone around him.”
Henry is sparked by the discovery of a long-neglected underground passage connecting a local theater – the setting is Buffalo, N.Y. – and the bank. He joins the acting company and falls for Julie (Vera Farmiga), its resident diva.
The two meet when she runs Henry down in her car.
“The car crash. The fates. The crossroads, when two people meet,” a bearded Reeves said smiling.
Filming on location brought back memories of his Toronto childhood.
“The experience of being on stage and then having to do a show reminded me of doing a play.”