Movie Review by EDF

Starring: Elisha Cuthbert, Daniel Gillies, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Laz Alonso
Director: Roland Joffe

Since HOSTEL came out a few years ago, it has somehow made the horror movie genre switch from cheap frights to more gore, which is all well and good as it will attract a core audience that appreciate this sort of thing. HOSTEL also came up with an interesting story premise that, at least for the first half of the movie, was very engaging. When the plot kicked into gear and the blood started to flow, that is when things started to get a bit silly and the rest of the movie was really a let down. I wonder if the same thing will happen to CAPTIVITY.

Jennifer (Elisha Cuthbert) is a hard working glamour model who at times feels lonely but at least she has her pet dog to keep her company. One evening while attending a socialite club, her drink is spiked and she is kidnapped. Waking up, she finds herself locked in a room where there are a number of surprises waiting for Jennifer. Forced to drink a cocktail of human remains, change into clothes that she previously wore on photo shoots and endure loud high pitch noises is enough to leave a person on edge.

Instead of breaking, Jennifer becomes stronger as her captor threatens to torture her with recorded scenes of previous victims having acid poured over their faces. Hope comes in the shape of a second captive called Gary (Daniel Gillies), who is not sure how long he has been there. Both Jennifer and Gary have several attempts at escaping but each time there is hope they will succeed, they are both recaptured. How are they going to survive and what did happen to Jennifer’s dog?

So there you have it. With scenes of extreme torture being one of the common story devices with most of today’s horror movies, any attempt to be extreme ends up being dull, boring and quite frankly, laughable. When we were concerned with our heroine’s fate and the unspeakable ordeal that she was going through, it was all wiped away as soon as Gary appeared and it was only then that the plot became very obvious. Saying that, if it had stayed a mystery who the kidnapper was and the story had not taken the obvious course, that in itself would have been enough to keep any viewer guessing what was going on.

Overall this has an interesting first half with sloppy, obvious plotting and bad dialogue to follow in the second half. Torturous but only for those watching.

3 out of 6 stars