The less you know about the film, the better. Tight script, surprising curves, and a solid three characters play that knowing anything more than what the film had suggested would ruin your experience. Much like if you went into The Sixth Sense knowing full well that Bruce Willis’ character is already dead. The film is a pleasant thriller. I’m at least twice caught surprised when the film throws its curve-ball. Nevertheless, the ending is sorta anticlimax. I had wished that the film ended several minutes earlier but I guess that was too depressing and the film would lose many viewers had the film went on with how I would’ve liked it. Such ending would’ve only be liked by someone like me, anyway, whom I think was among the minority.
Gemma Arterton is Alice Creed, and she is missing. In fact, she was kidnapped by Danny and Vic for a ransom of two million pounds from her rich father. That’s it. That’s what you need to know prior going to the film. Anything more, like I’d said, would only ruins the experience.
I love how the film started. It shows our two kidnappers going on a meticulous detail in preparing the kidnapping. They stole a van, soundproofing the apartment, having a proper lunch like a good ole workers, and finally kidnaps the girl. By this time, we know exactly who among the two calling the shots, and who was an awkward sidekick. It built an excitement, and when the kidnappers took Alice Creed, the effect is prevalent.
Had I not know beforehand that Gemma Arterton played the titular Alice Creed, I’d definitely missed her out. Seriously, before this film, I saw her only as an asset that should do no more than flashed her skin and perhaps pout some lips to garner an attention. In Alice Creed, however, although she did flashed her skin, and quite frontal that it prompted the projection man to put a custom censor screen, it was a necessity, a challenge to her professional self and ultimately had a most different end result. This is an A-list actress going all in for a role that normally would cost the producer arm and teeth to procure. In short, she was superb. Convincing in her fright, but not utterly miserable as to announce her lack of will to survive or her weakness. However, even if Alice Creed is the center of attention of this film, no one should be discounted Martin Compston and Eddie Marsan as the two kidnappers. See this film, and tell me how it will turns out without these two because I can’t even begin to fathom.
The script was also a high point of this film for obvious reason. The way it shifts and changed viewer’s perspective *constantly* for most of the film’s running time is something to commend. Impressive feat considering that this is J Blakeson’s feature debut.
My rating: *** / **** – Prepare to be wowed given that you can stomach its strong R-rated materials (none too violent). Solid three-characters play with tight script that it seems keep throwing curve-ball at you for most of the film’s running time. Sort of anticlimax but the choice is understandable. Gemma Arterton, Martin Coompston, and Eddie Marsan are awesome.