Being a fan of gory movies, I was really looking forward to Captivity. Even more so because it comes from acclaimed director Roland Joffe, who is best known for The Killing Fields and City Of Joy.
The film, with its theme being ‘abduction, confinement and torture’ seemed interesting, but my hopes of watching an entertaining bloody thriller were crushed as the plot unfolded.
WHAT’S THE STORY? NOT VERY GORY!
Jennifer Tree played by Elisha Cuthbert (My Sassy Girl, House Of Wax) is a hot ‘n happening model, always too busy with assignments to sit back for awhile and relax. She doesn’t seem to have friends or family, and stays alone with her dog Suzy. Jennifer is invited to a charity event at a nightclub in Soho, where her drink is spiked and Jennifer, unaware that she was being stalked for a long time, is abducted.
On waking up, Jennifer finds herself in a dark room, staring at a life-size poster of herself. On moving around, she finds all her things, her clothes and shoes and accessories stacked in the room and starts to panic even more.
She meets a fellow captive (Daniel Gillies) who seems equally helpless and the two try to escape (unsuccessfully) and stumble upon dead bodies of victims whose faces have been burned by acid. Their abductor communicates with words stuck on paper, made up of letters cut and pasted from newspapers and magazines. Does this sound familiar to anyone?
The abductor makes an appearance every now and then, playing sick games with his captives and installing in them the fear of the uncertainty of their fate.
A FEW GOOD SCENES
There are very few scenes (only two, actually) that make you sit up and think the movie just might get slightly thrilling.
The first one being the scene in which Jennifer is strapped to the bed, and her abductor puts human eyeballs and organs in the blender and forces her to drink it. This scene is fun to watch, as Jennifer watches in horror as her captor gently pinches her nose so she has to open her mouth to breathe, and deftly inserts a beaker into her mouth as soon as she opens it!
Another good scene is Jennifer being forced to shoot her dog. She gets a gun and a you-or-the-dog statement from the bad guy, and what you get next is the second scene in the movie that is worth watching.
SAME OLD, SAME OLD
The film is riddled with clichés, like guns not working the first time and blasting properly later, the girl losing her cool and trying to physically overpower the enemy. A lot of scenes in the film will remind you of Hostel, but Captivity does not even come close to the terror the torture scenes in Hostel create. Captivity gets very predictable, with a hackneyed storyline and obvious plot twists.
What really doesn’t work for the movie is the performances are not convincing at all. Our heroine, despite being in confinement and fear for many days, looks decked up all the time. It’s hard to digest that someone in such a big mess with seemingly no way out can have perfect lipstick and make-up at all times.
Roland Joffe’s Captivity does absolutely nothing for the horror/thriller fan. Halfway through the film, you know where the story is going and can probably even predict twists in the plot. It is one of the movies which, if you find playing on TV after many years will make you go ‘oh-I’ve-seen-this-one’ and change the channel. Thanks for keeping it short.
RATING: 1/5 (From my Buzz18 reviews)