Another cautionary yarn about a political hopeful whose adulterous behavior catches up with him, Mora Stephens' "Zipper" hits a snag from the get-go.
Patrick Wilson plays Sam Ellis, a hotshot federal prosecutor with an eye on the attorney general seat, whose insatiable addiction to a high-end escort service comes back to bite him in his aspirations.
This isn't exactly uncharted terrain. Instead of taking the audience in unfamiliar directions, filmmaker Mora Stephens (who wrote the script with Joel Viertel) is in such a heated rush to get to all the salacious bits, the story doesn't build crucial dramatic tension.
More problematic: The dependable Wilson, an actor whose screen charisma allows him to get away with playing slightly darker characters, has been given insufficient time to earn viewer sympathy, resulting in a character that comes across primarily as a smug, hypocritical jerk.
Also squandered here are Lena Headey as Wilson's wronged wife and Richard Dreyfuss channeling Karl Rove, while the intrusive, sinister-sounding score would have been a better fit for a cheesy horror flick.
"The Ashley Madison Story" starring Elvira, perhaps?
MPAA rating: R for strong sexual content, nudity, language, brief drug use.
Running time: 1 hour, 52 minutes.