Monday, August 13, 2007


Fresh on the heels of Hostel II, Captivity is the latest in the new Torture genre- possibly started several years ago by the first Saw movie. Before this movie was released, there was a batch of billboards in Los Angeles that depicted some fairly graphic images. This advertising campaign was met with public outcry, which only helped After Dark Pictures promote this as "the most controversial movie ever made." Genius. But it takes a lot for a movie to live up to billing like that- and Captivity does not.

Almost immediately after the opening sequence, Jennifer Tree (Elisha Cuthbert), a world famous model, is abducted and confined in a stereotypical non-descript chamber. After a underwhelming escape attempts, it's revealed that she is not alone. One room over is Gary Dexter (Daniel Gillies), a cross-country car courier. They form an realistic relationship under the circumstances, and work together to try to escape.

Captivity blends aspects of both Hostel and Saw, even throwing in a few throwbacks to the grandaddy of all creepy movies- Seven. Captivity, however, doesn't allow for the twisted irony in Saw and Seven, of using a sinner's sins against that person. There was at least a higher motivation behind those murders, instead of simply for entertainment. This is more of the straight ahead torture of the Hostel movies.

The movie started to lose my interest, but around the hour mark, it dissolved into a series of twists and manipulations. Some of them were interesting, but many were just unbelievable. It's a shame the acting did nothing to help the believability of this movie. Cuthbert is...okay, and so is Gillies, but most of the supporting cast is just awful. I know I'd have trouble acting with lines like
"It's Greek, it says..."
"How do you know it's Greek?"
"Because I speak Greek."
"What does it say?"
Are exchanges like that really necessary? And that's just one small example of the terrible dialogue filling this movie.

There is very little shocking material in this movie. There are no outstanding twists. The investigative portions are worthless. There are nearly no redeeming qualities to this movie. Saw was a decent movie, but I would gladly have given it up, if it meant there was nothing to inspire movies like Captivity to ever be made.

Watch the Trailer


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