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CAPTIVITY

SYNOPSIS:
Top cover girl and fashion model, Jennifer Tree (Elisha Cuthbert) has it all - beauty, fame, money and power. Out alone at a charity event in New York's Soho, Jennifer is drugged and held captive in a cell, subjected to a series of terrifying, life-threatening tortures. When she meets Gary (Daniel Gillies), another prisoner captive as a pawn in the sick games, they try their bets to escape from the cells and defeat the madman behind the sick games as the truth about their horrific abduction is revealed.

Review by Robert Newton:
Never mind the shameless and aborted pre-release poster campaign and judge this horror film on its merits - of which it has none. Without even calling into question the morals of a film which seems to exist only to depict the suffering of multiple women through hideous tortures, the film is still an empty mess, offering only a minor afterthought of an explanation to who is doing the evil and why. Why once-great director Roland Joffé who made art like The Killing Fields and The Mission when he started his career in the 1980s, is reduced to helming an ill-conceived grindhouse turd like this is beyond all rationality. Maybe his mother needed an operation. Maybe terrorists forced him to.

Whatever the reason, he is probably lamenting the day that the Directors Guild of America retired the pseudonym "Alan Smithee," the handy moniker that respectable guys would use when the movie they set out to make turned out to resemble a child's first finger painting on the bathroom cabinet with his own mess. Equally enigmatic is why a beautiful and moderately talented actor like Elisha Cuthbert ("24?) would agree to be defiled and objectified as she is here.

Her character is not given any time to build sympathy with the audience before she is bruised and bound for the pleasure of some unseen person who has seen "torture porn" movies like Saw one too many times. Hell, even the Saw movies have some sense of the value of human life, as pretentious, bloody and needlessly complicated as they are. This, though, is a knockoff so cheap and obvious that if it were a watch you bought from a guy on the street with a briefcase and a TV table, the adhesive sticker that's half peeling off the face would read "Rolexx" (written in pen).

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 0
Unfavourable: 1
Mixed: 0

CAPTIVITY (MA)
(US/Russia, 2007)

CAST: Elisha Cuthbert, Daniel Gillies, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Michael Harney, Laz Alonso, Maggie Damon, Chrysta Olson

PRODUCER: Mark Damon, Leonid Minkovski, Gary Mehlman

DIRECTOR: Roland Joffé

SCRIPT: Larry Cohen, Joseph Tura

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Daniel C. Pearl

EDITOR: Richard Nord

MUSIC: Marco Beltrami

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Addis Gadzhiyev

RUNNING TIME: 96 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Roadshow

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: May 8, 2008







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