Nicole Kidman in 'Destroyer' mostly just kills time

Nicole Kidman in 'Destroyer'

(CNN)Nicole Kidman's very busy year -- including roles in "Boy Erased" and "Aquaman" -- concludes on a dour, dark note in "Destroyer," with the actress starring in what feels like a detective yarn from an earlier era, the distinguishing characteristic being that men normally occupied these roles.

Still, Kidman's brooding, mumbling, unglamorous turn comes in a vehicle so fraught with clichés that the movie feels as if it's stumbling about until the finishing stretch, which, while somewhat more unpredictable, ultimately comes as too little, too late to redeem it.
The movie unfolds heavily through flashback, which helps explain why Kidman's detective Erin Bell is such a mess -- estranged from her teenage daughter (Jade Pettyjohn), who has taken up with a sleazy boyfriend, and battling her own demons. The pivotal moments can be traced to an undercover assignment from years before, a part o