• Publication date: March 15, 2011

What is Wealth Without Thrill? Lonely Hearts: A Case of Criminal Chemistry

Raymond Martinez Fernandez (Jared Leto) is a conman who lures victims to him through personal ads. He adopts a Latin-lover persona, dons a toupee, and woos even the most attractive women into his arms. Once a lady has fallen head over heels for him they are easy prey, and their bank accounts are promptly emptied.

Raymond Martinez Fernandez (Jared Leto) is a conman who lures victims to him through personal ads. He adopts a Latin-lover persona, dons a toupee, and woos even the most attractive women into his arms. Once a lady has fallen head over heels for him they are easy prey, and their bank accounts are promptly emptied.

Fernandez never imagined that his criminal profession would lead him to true romance however. Martha Beck (Salma Hayek) was a potential mark for the ladies man who, strangely, fell in love with Fernandez. Their mutual tendency toward deviancy made them a perfect couple, who would eventually become both lovers and partners in crime.

At first Beck pretended to be Raymond's sister, merely assisting him in conning his next target. Later, however, she grew jealous of Fernandez's victims and began killing them one at a time. He was not particularly bothered by Martha's addiction to violence; in fact, it fueled their strange relationship. Additionally, the murders insured that no witnesses were left behind.

Fernandez and Beck eventually caught the attention of detectives Elmer C. Robinson (John Travolta) and Charles Hildebrandt (James Gandolfini). Robinson and Hildebrandt began trailing the duo while investigating a suspicious murder disguised as a suicide, and relentlessly pursued the couple. Martha and Raymond are not average criminals however, and at least a dozen women will die before the sadistic killers face justice.

Todd Robinson, the grandson of Detective Elmer C. Robinson, directed Lonely Hearts using his grandfather's recollections of the case as source material. Though the murders have been chronicled before in films like the Honeymoon Killers and Dark Crimson, Robinson's personal relationship to the events add a unique, arguably superior touch to the familiar story.

Year: 2006

Duration: 108 minutes

Genre: Crime, Drama, Romance, Thriller

Starring:

Jared Leto

Salma Hayek

John Travolta

James Gandolfini

Laura Dern

Scott Caan

Alice Krige

Director: Todd Robinson

Rating: Rated R for strong violence, sexual content, nudity, and explicit language.