Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

Again I am disappointed.  Not because I expected ‘Captivity’ to be great and it ended up being horrible, but because I expected it to be horrible and it wasn’t.  Now it wasn’t great or anything, but since this was released in Europe a little while back the reviews from across the pond were simply horrible for this little horror thriller starring Maxim cover girl favorite Elisha Cuthbert, so when it finally made it over here for release I was thinking, 'finally here’s a movie that will force me to finally remove ‘Supercroc’ from its long running throne in the Garbage Corner'.  A movie doesn’t have to be worse than ‘Supercroc’ –like that’s possible - to go in the Garbage Corner, it just has to be bad enough to GO into the Garbage Corner.  I thought for sure the Tony Todd dinosaur disaster ‘The Eden Formula’ would be the one, but as bad as it was, with production values that were even below ‘Supercroc’, I ended up actually liking that movie.  ‘Captivity’ wasn’t really that bad to me.  Predictable and tired maybe, but not an altogether bad film.

The lovely Ms. Cuthbert plays Jennifer who is some kind of supermodel or celebrity of some sort who is snatched after being drugged at some club.  Now I don’t how easy it would be actually snatch a supermodel unnoticed from a crowded night club, but lets say that Tyra Banks is woozily walking and being led out of Club Hippity Hop by me, I’m thinking that somebody’s gonna notice – if not, then I need to find out where Tyra be hanging out yo.  When Jennifer comes to she’s in a labyrinthine cellar prison were the game master plays with the lights a lot and shows TV clippings of Jennifer telling interviewers how much she hates the dark.  So Jennifer screams and trips out a lot, but in the next cellar prison it turns out that there’s a young man who is also being held captive by the name of Gary (Daniel Gillies) and the two become fast friends and lean on each other for support.  Through some circumstances in this movie they eventually

get together and have sex.  I’m totally down with anybody wanting to have sex, but they both are fully aware that this dude has video cameras EVERYWHERE but they still go ahead and do the damn thing not the least bit concerned about the show they’re putting on.  Maybe the thought process is ‘we’re gonna die anyway, so what the hell’.  Apparently Paris Hilton has completely altered the face of modesty in this great nation of ours.

Anyway, there are two cops on the trail for the missing celebrity and I can pretty much guarantee you that one or both of them are going to die.  I know this because one of them is African American-ish (Laz Alonzo).  Bye-bye black cop.  Also, character actor Pruitt Taylor Vance shows up in this flick which lets everyone in audience know that somehow, someway he’s involved in all of this chicanery because of his natural crooked and shifty eyes.  Eventually there’s going to come a time in this movie where a hottie is going to have to dig deep, rise up and kick off in somebody’s ass.  And we’ll be here watching when it happens my friends!

Piloted by Academy Award nominated director Roland Joffe, though those nominations were a freaking lifetime ago (his star was 2 years old when Joffe was nominated for ‘The Killing Fields’), ‘Captivity’ is a slickly produced, well made little thriller that will probably disappoint most who go to see it unfortunately.  The Ad campaign has it setup as a ‘Hostel’, ‘Saw’ type film but it’s really nothing of the sort and there’s really not enough gore or sex to even justify the ‘R’ rating the MPAA levied on this film.  ‘Captivity’ also comes up short as a thriller, but this mainly due to the easy predictability of the script and the characters.  I don’t know if there was supposed to a mystery behind whoever was the kidnapping villain, but by simply counting the characters we’ve met, deducing the villain and the ‘twist’, if it was even that, was like grooving a fastball down the center of the plate with Barry Bonds at the bat.

There were some scenes of psychological torture I suppose, but nothing too shocking, and it wasn’t like Jennifer wasn’t going to make them all pay eventually anyway.  No, despite what you may have heard ‘Captivity’ was actually fairly tame fare considering what’s out and about nowadays and is a victim of its own mediocrity more than anything else.

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