8mm is an uncompromising tour de force of a world one would like to believe does not exist. Beginning with a simple enquiry to determine the authenticity of a snuff film, established investigator Tom Welles (Cage) is thrust deep into a seedy world of pornography, sado masochism, and murder all within the deepest recesses of LA and New York's soulless underbellies.
Beginning as a missing persons case, Cage soon changes direction and requests the help of pornography store clerk Joaquin Phoenix. At this point the descent into hell really begins, though from the outset of the film one is able to discern that it has an air of the ungodliness about it.
Undoubtedly Cage's performance reinforces the sense of bleakness and desperation in the film. As the film begins, Cage appears to be little more than a mild mannered, somewhat shy private investigator, but as he descends deeper into the investigation he is faced with a dark epiphany, whether he has the strength to kill in this tale of vigilante justice.
Extra credit must be given to the direction, as the whole cinematography, score, and setting create a real sense of film noir in a bleak modern setting.
Last but not least, the DVD package compliments it quite well with equally dark menu artwork, decent featurettes and star profiles.
Definitely among my top ten movies ever, a totally unforgettable and thought provoking film and one of the best thrillers of the past ten years.