The movie Struck (2007) was “inspired” by a terrible news story about an inhumane woman’s car accident. In life the woman was African American, in Stuart Gordon‘s film she is white (Mena Suvari as Brandi)—a white woman with black friends. No angels, these.

Unintentionally Brandi hits with her car a newly homeless, jobless man (Stephen Rea), much of whose body becomes stuck—and bloody—in the car’s busted windshield. He is still alive, though, while anxious Brandi is unhelpful.

Human beings are so self-protecting and self-aggrandizing, as Brandi is, they will disregard another’s suffering and death when these things threaten their welfare. This is what Gordon and his co-writers are telling us. The majority of the characters here are the film’s dartboards, with a lot of sympathy naturally going to Rea’s down-and-outer. Struck is fierce, candid and practically nihilistic. Candid, I say: it’s for mature audiences only. The problem is Brandi’s not being examined, and a little exploration of Brandi’s boyfriend (Russell Hornsby) would have been nice as well. Even so, the movie was worth my time.