REVIEW: NORTH V SOUTH

CAST

Freema Agyeman (Doctor Who)
Keith Allen (Hector)
Bernard Hill (The Lord of The Rings)
Steven Berkoff (Red 2)
Geoff Bell (Green Street)
Judith Alexander (Bloodless)
Gary Cargill (Maleficent)
Oliver Cotton (The Dark Knight Rises)
Charlotte Hope (Game of Thrones)

Geoff Bell and Brad Moore in North v South (2015)North v South has all the makings of an engaging crime drama. There’s beefy strongmen who swear a big, Tarantino-esque game before unleashing wrath on their equally arrogant adversaries. There’s suspenseful negotiations between the film’s two crime gangs, one from the north of England and the other from the south, that we know are all for show and will only end in violence. There’s vehicular action, standoffs, shoot-outs, deception, sex, drugs, and a whole array of colorful characters, from a child assassin to a cross-dressing hitman. And, of course, there’s a star-crossed love story between a young boy and girl from opposing gangs. The-Rambler-2013-Movie-1What I wasn’t able to grasp was what all these elements were trying to build towards, as North v South ends up feeling very disjointed. Brad Moore surely eats up the screen when he steps in a few minutes into the film as Gary Little, a loudmouthed gangster with a sharp, profane response to even the slightest criticism. This scene, which involves a clown (Steve Evets) and his young daughter Sam (Sydney Wade) stopping at the wrong time to go to the bathroom at a pub at which Gary and partner Bill (Geoff Bell) are waiting, sets a tense, witty and violent tone for the film, but with so much going on for the rest of the 90 minutes, it’s hard to keep up with it all. Soon we watch as Gary and his partners – representatives from the southern gang – partake in a blunt but suspenseful negotiation with their opponents from the north. The two groups have been in a Cold War of sorts for decades, but here the truce is about ready to crack, and as soon as the meeting is adjourned both groups begin a cat-and-mouse game of collecting info, organizing assassinations, and planning large-scale attacks. A simple gang-vs-gang battle of wit, spit and grit would have made for a convoluted enough hour-and-a-half, but with everything else going on, it’s a pretty crowded affair.streetfighter-chun-1Thrown into the mix is the romance between Willow (Charlotte Hope) and Terry (Elliott Tittensor). She’s the daughter of Vic Clarke (Steven Berkoff), head of the southern gang, and he works for the family business, collecting info for the northerners. Their romance is supposed to anchor the movie in humanity, but ultimately just feels like it’s added baggage. Terry narrates the film, but once more textured characters come into play, we forget about his perspective altogether. Amongst these other characters are Gustave (Dom Monot), a transgender hitman, and Penny (Freema Agyeman), who was trained from orphanhood to kill for the northern gang and has now been assigned to train the young Sam – the tween daughter of the clown from the opening scene – to do the same. Agyeman is a standout of the cast, reminiscent of her days on Doctor Who with equal parts tough warrior and caring guardian. Sydney Wade also gives a memorable turn as the unassuming Sam, who doesn’t realize while playing around with a massive rifle that she’s being robotically trained to kill with it.32659_stritfajter_or_street-fighter-the-legend-of-chun_1600x1200_www_GdeFon_ru_-600x400All these elements are a good mix of entertaining and affecting when looked at on their own, but 90 minutes simply isn’t enough time for them to all mesh together into something that feels complete. Instead, North v South comes off as divided as its title, unsure how to connect all the elements and instead throwing out contrived new elements around every turn without much connective tissue in between. Visually, director Steven Nesbit and Kyle Heslop have created a sleek, stylish thriller, with the only noticeable flaws in the production values being the odd bit of sloppy editing here and there. The problems with the film mainly stem from the bigger picture, in that in trying to say so much, the film eventually says very little about its characters and their actions. Nonetheless, it’s quick enough and filmed with enough memorable scenes that it will make for enjoyable light viewing for fans of the crime genre, and may even have strong lasting value.

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REVIEW: THE FORGER (2014)

CAST

John Travolta (The Punisher)
Christopher Plummer (All The Money In The World)
Abigail Spencer (The Haunting In Connecticut 2)
Jennifer Ehle (Fifty Shades of Grey)
Tye Sheridan (X-Men: Apocalypse)
Anson Mount (Inhumans)
Victor Gojcaj (The Taking of Pelham 123)

Christopher Plummer in The Forger (2014)The world’s best art forger (John Travolta) makes a deal with a crime syndicate to get an early release from prison, but in return he must pull off an impossible heist – he must forge a painting by Claude Monet, steal the original from a museum, and replace it with a replica so perfect that no one will notice. He enlists the help of his father (Christopher Plummer) and son (Tye Sheridan) and together they plan the heist of their lives!John Travolta in The Forger (2014)The Forger, yet pretty forgettable, is still quite an involving drama, with an excellent performance from Travolta. The Forger offers little surprises and sits between good and fair. It’s not a bad film but a decent enough one that will entertain on a slow day.

REVIEW: BROKEN CITY

CAST

Mark Wahlberg (Pain & Gain)
Russell Crowe (The Mummy)
Catherine Zeta-Jones (Entrapment)
Jeffrey Wright (Westworld)
Barry Pepper (The Green Mile)
Alona Tal (Veronica Mars)
Natalie Martinez (Under The Dome)
Michael Beach (Third watch)
Kyle Chandler (Super 8)
Griffin Dunne (My Girl)
James Ransone (Sinister)
Justin Chambers (The Zodiac)
Gregory Jbara (Remember Me)
Indigo (weeds)
J.D. Evermore (12 Years a Slave)

Russell Crowe and Mark Wahlberg in Broken City (2013)NYPD detective Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) is arrested for the murder of Mikey Tavarez, who was believed to have raped and murdered sixteen-year-old Yesenia Barea but “walked” on a technicality. Chief Carl Fairbanks (Jeffrey Wright), goes to Mayor of New York City Nicholas Hostetler (Russell Crowe) with a witness and evidence. Hostetler buries the evidence, and a judge clears Taggart as having shot Tavarez in self-defense. The mayor calls Taggart to his office for a private meeting and calls him “a hero,” but still forces him to leave the police. Seven years later, Taggart is living with his girlfriend Natalie Barrow (Natalie Martinez), an aspiring actress. Taggart’s private detective business is on the verge of bankruptcy when Mayor Hostetler hires him to investigate his wife, Cathleen Hostetler (Catherine Zeta-Jones), who he thinks is having an affair. Helped by his assistant, Katy Bradshaw (Alona Tal), Taggart learns that Cathleen is seeing Paul Andrews (Kyle Chandler), the campaign manager of Hostetler’s rival in the upcoming elections, Jack Valliant (Barry Pepper).Russell Crowe and Mark Wahlberg in Broken City (2013)At a fundraiser for Hostetler’s campaign, Cathleen reveals to Taggart that she knows he has been following her, and advises him not to trust her husband. Taggart delivers to Mayor Hostetler photos taken of Cathleen meeting with Andrews. At a film debut party, Barrow reveals that her real name is Natalia Barea, and that Yesenia was her sister. At the screening, Taggart is shocked at Natalie’s sex scene, and strongly disapproves. He had thought it would express poetic love, but finds it akin to porn. Combined with guilt over working for Hostetler, Taggart descends into regular drinking bouts. He argues with Natalie over the scene and about the people she is seeing during her work. She breaks off the relationship. Taggart gets drunk, brawling with strangers while walking the city streets. He receives a phone call from Katy telling him Chief Fairbanks wants him at a murder scene. When he arrives, he learns that Andrews, Valliant’s campaign manager, has been found murdered.Mark Wahlberg in Broken City (2013)Taggart tells Fairbanks that he was hired by Mayor Hostetler to investigate his wife. They learn that the candidate Valliant was in Andrews’ apartment, and the two men were lovers. Valliant reveals that Andrews was scheduled to meet Todd Lancaster (James Ransone), son of Hostetler’s wealthy benefactor, contractor Sam Lancaster (Griffin Dunne). A furious Cathleen tells Taggart that Andrews was a close friend of hers, not a lover, and that he had promised her information about Hostetler’s plans for the Bolton Village Housing Project. The deal was expected to enrich both Sam Lancaster and the mayor. Hostetler wanted to find out Cathleen’s source, so he manipulated Taggart into tracking her.Catherine Zeta-Jones in Broken City (2013)Taggart decides to investigate Mayor Hostetler for corruption. He goes to Lancaster’s construction business, and finds workers destroying loads of documents. Stealing some of the documents, he discovers that Bolton Village has been sold in order to build high-rise office buildings, rather than a new housing development. Hundreds of impoverished people will be left homeless while Hostetler and Lancaster make a profit. After leaving Lancaster’s, Taggart is pursued in a car chase by Hostetler’s men, who run him off the road and take back the documents. Taggart visits Sam’s son Todd Lancaster, who says he had intended to give Andrews a copy of the demolition contract as evidence against Hostetler on the night Andrews was murdered. He gives it to Taggart instead. Taggart confronts Mayor Hostetler, who is unfazed because he has kept a video showing that Taggart murdered Tavarez in cold blood. Since there is no statute of limitations on murder, Taggart can still be prosecuted and face prison time. Taggart records their conversation, as the Mayor admits to his own corrupt dealings.Mark Wahlberg in Broken City (2013)Willing to make the recording public, although he would endanger his freedom, Taggart turns the recording over to Commissioner Fairbanks. While Hostetler is at home celebrating a successful debate, Fairbanks arrives to arrest him. Fairbanks tells the mayor he was having an affair with Cathleen. In the film’s final scene, Taggart meets Fairbanks at a bar and they toast Valliant, who has won the election. Katy comes in to say goodbye before the two men leave the bar.Russell Crowe and Catherine Zeta-Jones in Broken City (2013)Broken City kept my attention but left me hungry for more. I suppose that is all you can ask for at the movies. I would take this ride again.

REVIEW: STANDOFF

 

CAST

Laurence Fishburne (Hannibal)
Thomas Jane (The Punisher)
Ella Ballentine (The Calling)
John Tench (Andromeda)
Jim Watson (Crimson Peak)
Ted Atherton (Max Payne)

Laurence Fishburne in Standoff (2016)A young girl, Bird with her aunt’s boyfriend waiting at the car, visits the grave of her parents on the anniversary of their deaths, witnesses and photographs a hitman, Sade, killing people attending a funeral. When her aunt’s boyfriend, Roger, comes looking for her, Sade kills him and tries to kill her too, but she flees into the woods. Bird comes across the house of a war veteran, Carter, who vows to protect her. Arriving at the house, Sade shoots at Carter, who grabs a shotgun and shoots back. They exchange words and gunfire, and both are wounded. During a break in the gunfire, Sade tries to talk Carter into sending Bird down so he can kill her. Carter refuses, and they both pause to patch up their wounds and prepare for the next round. Carter sends the girl for some light bulbs, which he breaks and throws down the stairs, alerting Sade to the fact that he “ain’t no farmer.” Carter finds out from the girl what happened in the cemetery and that she has a picture of Sade’s face. Sade, in the downstairs of the house, starts going through Carter’s possessions and finds a picture of Carter in military uniform with his wife and son. He tries to convince Carter he is also ex-military and he understands why Carter is protecting Bird. Carter lets him know he is aware that Bird has a picture of him and that is why he is after her.Meanwhile, a sheriff’s deputy happens upon the abandoned cars at the cemetery. In the house, a resting Carter is dreaming about a tragedy that happened to his son. He wakes up and sends Bird to get a bottle of alcohol. She returns with the drink and his son’s teddy bear, which he angrily tells her to put back. Sade finds and starts to read a letter Carter had written his wife, taking blame for the death of their son. In the letter, he states he knew she blamed him for the death and didn’t blame her for leaving him. Sade realizes that Carter had packed up and written the letter as he was contemplating suicide. He snidely encourages him to go ahead. Bird tells Carter that her dad told her she had “no quit in her” and wonders if she will see her dad when she dies. She asks Carter why his wife left him and he said the house reminded her of their son. They hug and Sade shoots a round, gaining the attention of the deputy (Jim Watson) who was looking around for the cars’ owners. The light in the house starts to fade and Carter now needs to get Bird out as he only has one shot remaining and in the dark he can’t protect her.Laurence Fishburne in Standoff (2016)The deputy goes back to his car to report the shot fired and ask if a shooting range had opened. He drives up to the house, where Sade sees him arrive while Carter is trying to get Bird out through a window on the second level. Knocking at the door, the deputy is shot by Sade and Bird goes back into the house. Sade hides the deputy’s car and starts to head back to the house where Carter confronts him and tells him to leave. Sade tries to goad him to shoot, guessing he only has the one shot and would likely miss given the shotgun’s range. Carter backs off and Sade grabs the deputy as bait. He tries to bargain with Carter for the deputy’s life as well as his own for Bird. When Carter refuses, Sade starts to torture the deputy. He eventually shoots him and rolls him out where Carter can see him. After a period of silence, Carter tells Bird to hide and starts down the stairs. Sade in the meanwhile makes his way barefoot across the roof. He ends up at the top of the stairs, where he is surprised by Carter, and falls down the glass-strewn stairs. Fed-up, Sade plans to set the house on fire, but changes his mind and calls Carter’s wife on Carter’s cell phone which he had found earlier. Resting again, the men engage in another argument.indexNight descends and Carter’s wife Mara arrives. Sade bargains again for Bird implying he’ll rape Mara if Carter doesn’t comply. Fearing he will trade for his wife, Bird pleads with Carter not to. Instead he gives her the gun instructing her to shoot down the stairs if Sade heads up. He heads down the stairs, telling Sade “if he wants her, go get her.” Sade goes on a rant before shooting Carter in the leg. When Sade yells to Bird that he will kill Carter, she quickly heads down the stairs in order go save him. Before Sade has the chance to kill any of them, the lights in the house flicker, giving Carter the chance to rush the assassin, stabbing Sade multiple times, though is shot in the ensuring struggle. While Carter incapacitates Sade, Mara runs outside to call 911. Bird, however, stays behind, determined to kill her tormentor herself. Finding Sade against the wall, severally bleeding, he tells her to shoot him after she aims the gun at Sade and pulls the trigger, but the gun only clicks; with Sade realizing the round was a dud the whole time. Sade aims his gun at Bird, who looks on at the man, unafraid, telling him herself to pull the trigger, though he only responds with the fact that he is not a monster before dying without shooting. With it finally over, Bird heads over to Carter who is still alive. He simply tells her “there is no quit in me.” as the three of them wait for the police to arrive.MV5BZTYwNzAwNTktZGEwZS00ZmY0LThkMGMtNDhiZWUzNjhhNmZhXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyNzU1NzE3NTg@._V1_CR0,45,480,270_AL_UX477_CR0,0,477,268_AL_I honestly don’t understand the really nasty reviews here. This is a very well directed thriller with some great acting from the leads & well worth a look. If you are fond of one location thrillers with a good build up of suspense & tension along with fine character development you’ll enjoy it too.

REVIEW: THE GHOST (AKA THE GHOST WRITER)

CAST

Ewan McGregor (Cassandra’s Dream)
Pierce Brosnan (The World’s End)
Olivia Williams (An Education)
Kim Cattrall (Big Trouble In Little China)
Timothy Hutton (The Dark Half)
Tom Wilkinson (Batman Begins)
Jon Bernthal (The Punisher)
James Belushi (Red Heat)
Robert Pugh (Game of Thrones)
Eli Wallach (The Godfather – Part II)

Ewan McGregor in The Ghost Writer (2010)A British ghostwriter (Ewan McGregor) is hired by the publishing firm Rhinehart, Inc. to complete the autobiography of former Prime Minister Adam Lang (Pierce Brosnan). His predecessor and Lang’s aide, Mike McAra, has recently died in an apparent drowning accident. The writer travels to Old Haven on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, where Lang and his wife Ruth (Olivia Williams) are staying, along with Lang’s personal assistant (and implied mistress), Amelia Bly (Kim Cattrall). Amelia forbids the writer from taking McAra’s manuscript outside, emphasising that it is a security risk.Ewan McGregor in The Ghost Writer (2010)Shortly after the writer’s arrival, former Foreign Secretary Richard Rycart (Robert Pugh) accuses Lang of authorising the illegal seizure of suspected terrorists and handing them over for torture by the CIA, a possible war crime. Lang faces prosecution by the International Criminal Court unless he stays in the US (or one of the few other countries that does not recognise the court’s jurisdiction). While Lang is in Washington, the writer finds items in McAra’s room suggesting he might have stumbled across a dark secret. Among them is an envelope containing photographs and a phone number the writer discovers is Rycart’s.Pierce Brosnan in The Ghost Writer (2010)During a bike ride, the writer encounters an old man (Eli Wallach) who tells him the current couldn’t have taken McAra’s body from the ferry where he disappeared to the beach where it was discovered. He also reveals a neighbour saw flashlights on the beach the night McAra died, but later fell down the stairs and went into a coma. Later, Ruth admits to the writer Lang had never been very political, and until recently always took her advice. When he tells her the old man’s story, she suddenly rushes out into the rainy night to “clear her head.” Upon returning, she reveals Lang and McAra had argued the night before the latter’s death, and the ghost writer and Ruth have a one night stand while Adam is away.The next morning, the writer takes the BMW X5[5] McAra used on his last journey. Unable to cancel the pre-programmed directions on the car’s sat-nav, he decides to follow them. He arrives in Belmont at the home of Professor Paul Emmett (Tom Wilkinson). Emmett denies anything more than a cursory acquaintance with Lang, despite the writer showing him two pictures of the pair among photographs found in McAra’s possessions, as well as another on the wall of Emmett’s study. When the writer tells Emmett the sat-nav proves McAra visited him the night he died, Emmett denies meeting McAra and becomes evasive. The writer leaves, and successfully eludes a car that is pursuing him. He boards the ferry back to Martha’s Vineyard, but when he sees the pursuit car drive aboard, he flees the boat at the last moment and checks into a small motel by the ferry dock.Pierce Brosnan and Olivia Williams in The Ghost Writer (2010)With no one else to turn to, the writer redials Rycart’s number, asking for help. While waiting, the writer does research on Emmett and links his think tank to a military contractor. He also finds leads connecting Emmett to the CIA. When Rycart arrives, he reveals McAra gave him documents linking Lang to so-called “torture flights,” where terrorist suspects were placed on private jets owned by Emmett’s company, to be tortured while airborne. Rycart further claims that McAra found new evidence, which he wrote about in the “beginning” of the manuscript. The men cannot, however, find anything in the early pages. The writer discusses Emmett’s relationship with Lang, while Rycart recounts how Lang’s decisions as Prime Minister uniformly benefited US interests. When the writer is summoned to accompany Lang on his return flight by private jet, he confronts Lang and accuses him of being a CIA agent recruited by Emmett. Lang derides his suggestions.Pierce Brosnan, Kim Cattrall, and Olivia Williams in The Ghost Writer (2010)Upon leaving the aircraft, Lang is assassinated by a British anti-war protester, who is in turn shot by Lang’s bodyguards. Nevertheless, the writer is asked to complete the book for posthumous publication, as in light of Lang’s death it will be a certain best-seller. Amelia invites him to the book’s launch party in London, where she unwittingly tells him the Americans tightened access to the book, as the “beginnings” contained evidence threatening national security. She also tells him Emmett, who is in attendance, was Ruth’s tutor when she was a Fulbright scholar at Harvard. The writer realises the clues were hidden in the original manuscript in the opening words of each chapter, and discovers the message: “Lang’s wife Ruth was recruited as a CIA agent by Professor Paul Emmett of Harvard University.” He concludes Ruth shaped Lang’s every political decision to benefit the USA under direction from the CIA.Ewan McGregor in The Ghost Writer (2010)The writer passes a note to Ruth revealing his discovery. She unfolds the note, and is devastated. When she sees the writer raising a glass, she is kept from following him by Emmett and other assistants. As the writer leaves the party he attempts to take a taxi, without success. As he crosses the street off-camera, a car accelerates in his direction to an impending collision. As witnesses react in horror, the pages containing McAra’s manuscript are blowing in the wind, leaving the writer’s fate unconfirmed.Pierce Brosnan and Ewan McGregor in The Ghost Writer (2010)Polanski is a master of subtlety, grace, and wit. His eye creates breathtaking and beautiful shots. His ear adds a malevolent and demented humor to the score of a film. There is most always something unspeakable, indescribable beneath the surface of a Polanski film. Something unnerving about the tone but never overbearing, or pounding the audience over the head with it. This is certainly true of The Ghost Writer. What I found surprising, not being familiar with the novel on which it is based, was the political statement being made. Humorously portraying certain key figures in the political environment of the last decade. In any other hands, this could never have been done so believably and deftly. All the key performances are on target. And how could they not be. For Polanski knows how to work with actors and guide them in creating such memorable characters. Ewan McGregor certainly fits his role seamlessly as does Olivia Williams. So many could learn from Polanski how a thriller needs to be constructed in order to hold an audience to the very end. The word entertainment means to ‘hold in between’ which is what The Ghost Writer does from beginning to its haunting and inevitable conclusion.

REVIEW: POWER OF ATTORNERY

CAST

Danny Aiello (Leon)
Elias Koteas (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Rae Dawn Chong (Commando)
Roger Wilson (Blow Out)
Nina Siemaszko (Airheads)
Andrew Airlie (Reaper)

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Being a fan of Elias Koteas, I happened along this little gem of a movie. It’s one of the only times I can remember seeing him as a leading man, usually he plays off-beat quirky roles a la “Exotica” and “Crash”. All in all, he is very convincing as an ambitious lawyer, who succumbs not only to money but to pride as well. The story starts off slowly but before you know it, it sucks you into it’s Machiavellian plot. The film’s style is naturalistic and you almost feel like you are in the same room as the characters. Danny Aiello, who usually plays blustery, larger than life characters, gives a wonderfully nuanced performance of a John Gotti type character. It would have been very easy for him to turn this stereotypcal don into a Godfather cliche, but instead, the director chose for him to play down the part. Although the production value could have been better(the music sucks and doubling Vancouver for New York was a poor choice) I feel that this intelligent courtroom drama is worth checking out.

REVIEW: THE DISAPPEARANCE OF ALICE CREED

CAST

Gemma Arterton (Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters)
Eddie Marsan (Sherlock Holmes)
Martin Compston (Filfth)

Gemma Arterton in The Disappearance of Alice Creed (2009)Victor and Danny met in prison and hatched a plan to kidnap and demand ransom for the only child of a rich family. The film opens with scenes in which they make meticulous preparations to carry out the kidnap. They take their victim, the nice Alice Creed, her head hooded, to a soundproofed room. They cut off her clothing and tie her to a bed with a ball-gag buckled into her mouth. They force her to look at a camera as she is photographed naked. They then dress her in a tracksuit, put a hood on her head and leave her. They bag up both her clothes and theirs for disposal and Vic sends the pictures to her father as first step towards making the ransom demand. In continuing graphic scenes, they explain to Alice that she needs to sign when she needs the toilet and strip her lower half in order that she use a bed pan whilst still tied up. Neither shows any emotion during her humiliation but Vic, who is dominant, questions Danny’s resolve now that the formerly ‘hypothetical girl’ has become real.Eddie Marsan and Martin Compston in The Disappearance of Alice Creed (2009)Vic is the one who leaves the place where they are holding Alice in order to make preparations to obtain the ransom, whilst Danny is left guarding Alice. In his absence, Alice, signing that she needs to do a ‘number two’. persuades Danny to untie her and turn his back. She attacks him with her bed pan and grabs his pistol, which she fires during the struggle between them, hitting the wall. Believing he is about to die, Danny reveals his identity to Alice. They were lovers before his time in jail and he says he met Vic while in jail and chose her as the kidnap victim with a view to getting money from the father she had told him she hated. He says his plan was to double cross Vic and to start a new life, sharing the money with Alice. They hear Vic returning and Danny points out that even if she were to shoot him she would not get past Vic. Alice agrees to play along with Danny’s plan and lets him tie her back up. Later, while Vic is away again, Alice gets Danny to untie her and seduces him, managing to handcuff Danny to the bed. She tries to leave but finds the front door bolted from the inside and can’t get out. She sees a mobile phone on the table and dials 999 but cannot tell the operator where she is. She then notices Danny’s gun and decides to use it to get him to tell her where the keys to the front door are. The Disappearance of Alice Creed (2009)Danny tells her they are in his trouser pocket, which is close enough to the bed for him to overpower her whilst she is attempting to retrieve them. He reties the unconscious Alice to the bed. Vic returns and says the exchange is on. Vic is left alone with Alice while Danny prepares the van. As Vic starts to get Alice ready for the trip, the mobile phone she managed to obtain falls out of her pocket onto the bed. Vic checks it and finds it shows a 999 call. Then he spots the bullet in the wall, ungags Alice and threatens her. She screams for Danny, proving she knows him. She then tells Vic that Danny intended to double cross him and that she had done a deal with Danny to play along as kidnap victim in exchange for a share of the money.Gemma Arterton in The Disappearance of Alice Creed (2009)Vic is shocked at Danny’s betrayal. When Danny returns, Vic gives Danny a chance to admit something was amiss by saying he feels something is ‘not right’. But Danny does not reveal anything to Vic. They inject Alice with something to put her temporarily to sleep and move her to a deserted, rural warehouse, where they chain her up in a back room. Vic asks Danny for his set of keys to the locks and then drives him to a forest where he says they are to pick up the ransom. There, Vic confronts Danny about his betrayal, saying he has consigned both himself and Alice to death through it. He says he now intends the hole they had dug for the ransom to be for Danny’s body. Danny flees and Vic shoots at him, wounding him. Danny manages to get away and hide. Vic then retrieves the ransom elsewhere and returns to get Alice. He tries to give her an injection, as he has done previously in order to render her unconscious whilst moving her, but the wounded Danny returns as he is doing so, overcomes him and gets his gun. In a stand off between Vic and Danny, Vic reveals to Alice that the two men were lovers. He attempts to use the bond between them to persuade the fatally wounded Danny to put the gun down and be taken to hospital.Danny shoots Vic point blank and then, to Alice’s horror, leaves the room, switching off the light on his way out. She is still handcuffed to railings and Vic appears to be dead. However, he revives sufficiently to throw keys to Alice. She manages to unlock her fetters and stagger out through the deserted warehouse. Outside, she finds Danny has not got far. The car he was leaving in is a short distance up the road, the ransom money on the passenger seat and Danny’s dead body in the driver’s seat. Alice opens the car door and drags his body out. The radio is still playing. She looks at the bag of ransom money and drives away.ncYTm6D2hUed-kcw58VE3AExtremely tense, beautifully shot, generally well acted, this is a clever and effective exercise on making an exciting film on a tiny budget. Even though about 75% of this kidnapping tale takes place in a two room apartment, director/writer Blakeson finds enough effective and compelling ways to photograph his tiny set, and enough sharp plot twists and reveals that any claustrophobia becomes a plus not a problem.