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Cleanskin [Blu-ray]

3.7 out of 5 stars 107 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

A burnt out secret service agent must pursue and eliminate a deadly suicide bomber and dismantle a terrorist cell that is wreaking havoc on the streets of London before they strike again.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Sean Bean, Abhin Galeya, Charlotte Rampling, Peter Polycarpou, Tuppence Middleton
  • Directors: Hadi Hajaig
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Blu-ray, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: Mandarin Chinese
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Entertainment One
  • DVD Release Date: September 11, 2012
  • Run Time: 108 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (107 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B008H1Q40O
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,035 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray
Truthfully, I'd give any movie with Sean Bean in it a chance and that was a primary point of interest in checking out Hadi Hajaig's "Cleanskin." Include the marvelous Charlotte Rampling, and it's an added bonus that's hard to resist. "Cleanskin" is yet another British action film that examines the effects of terrorism on domestic soil. There have been so many films and TV shows on this subject, it might well be impossible to offer up anything new. "Cleanskin," from a plotting standpoint, certainly isn't breaking the mold you've come to expect. It opens with a bold action sequence, obvious budget constraints, and sketchy character development. After about thirty minutes, I'd almost written it off as unimaginative and completely routine. But the uneven tone of the opening slowly starts to settle itself into a groove and the picture begins to get progressively better. Credit must be given to Bean. He doesn't have a lot of shading, but his relentless brutality is riveting. Even better, though, is Abhin Galeya. Galeya, as the terrorist, is given the story's most complex arc and really paints a compelling foe who is surprisingly identifiable.

Bean is an undercover operative within the British Secret Service. On assignment, he loses some explosives in a violent heist. His disappointed superiors (Rampling and James Fox) task him to right the situation, still keeping the entire operation off the books. Bean is single-minded and uncompromising. With a new partner, he'll do whatever it takes to achieve mission goals. In addition to this story, we also meet Galeya and (through flashbacks) we see how he developed into a violent extremist.
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Format: DVD
I picked up an advanced copy and thought it was going to be a typical British movie which I do not like. I was pleasantly surprised how very good it was.

The story is interesting. It had plenty of twists and turns that kept me interested throughout keeping your interest up until the end. Some of the story, I thought could have used some work, for example, a fundamentalist Muslim cleric is unlikely to be too excited about going to his boy birthday party. If he did, he would not mention it publicly. The scene, however, is important as it shows the attitude the cleric has to his disciple. To the people that organise suicide bombers, these people are a weapon, not people. Some of the other scenes on recruitment to Islamic terrorism seemed a bit too simple - Hollywoodish. Still overall it was well done. It showed a young muslim guy looking for something and how he gets drawn to terrorism.

The acting was good. The characters are interesting. I did like the fighting scenes too. They were much more realistic then what movies often now days of a young skinny woman who takes on he-man and wins.

I would recommend it.
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Format: DVD
Terrorist are able to steal some plastic explosives from British Intelligence. The British have placed a tracer in the Semtex explosives. When a terrorist uses the explosives, Charlotte Rampling (Charlotte McQueen) of the agency asks agent Ewan (Sean Bean) to do whatever is necessary to find the terrorists, even going beyond standard protocol. Mark (Tom Burke) will be his young assistant.

Meanwhile, we do get to see our terrorist in a subplot. It starts six years ago and goes into his indoctrination and transformation. The film let's us see the conflict within the Muslim community as those who see the west as evil, those who destroy and rape their culture. And then there are those who admire the west for its freedom and opportunities it affords people of all religions.

This is one of the better British crime/drama/thrillers I have seen, primarily because they have imitated American films and have stopped trying to do them the British way with quirky humor and characters that didn't fit the rest of the script. Americans like their crime heroes to have above human qualities. Sean Bean gives us the rogue agent we love. Good script. Good acting. Action, mystery, drama, and the usual twist. 4 1/2 stars.

PARENTAL GUIDE: F-bomb, sex, and nudity (Tuppence Middleton).
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Format: DVD
I have mixed feelings as I sit down to write this review of Cleanskin. I was drawn to the movie because of its setting in the UK, a somewhat different locale for a counterterrorism thriller, and because it featured Sean Bean(one of my favorite actors) in the leading role.

The first hour or so of the movie is pretty good, a solid four-star film as I state above, with a great deal of attention paid to the radicalization of a British-born Muslim law student, perhaps at the expense of developing Sean Bean's backstory. While this does become a key focus of the film, I fail to understand how other reviewers have come away with an impression of "pro-Muslim bias", given the rather sinister portrayal of the imam and the heinous deeds committed in the name of Islam throughout the course of the film. A rationalization process is always present, whether you're dealing with terrorists or serial killers--yet some people seem to feel the need to go into hysterics whenever such a process is explained and examined. I applaud the producers for taking the time to present a more careful, thoughtful treatment of the subject than is typically found in an action thriller.

That said, with roughly a half hour to go till the end, the movie completely derails into some sort of government conspiracy angle that is never fully explained and makes little sense when taken together with the rest of the film. The overall effect strikes one as a bit bizarre, and to be quite blunt, ruined a great deal of my enjoyment. I would also say that I thought Sean Bean was underutilized in the movie--I wanted to see more of him, know more about his character. But that didn't happen.

Ultimately, this was a film with a lot of unrealized potential and I found myself disappointed, despite some good moments early on. I would recommend anyone looking for a British spy film to instead check out a season of the BBC's TV show "Spooks" or "MI-5" as it is known here in the States.
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Cleanskin [Blu-ray]
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