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The Disappearance of Alice Creed
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On a suburban street, two masked men seize a young woman. They bind and gag her and take her to an abandoned, soundproofed apartment. She is Alice Creed (Gemma Arterton), daughter of a millionaire. Her kidnappers, the coldly efficient Vic (Eddie Marsan) and his younger accomplice Danny (Martin Compston), have worked out a meticulous plan. But Alice is not going to play the perfect victim – she’s not giving in without a fight. In a tense power-play of greed, duplicity and survival we discover that sometimes disappearances can be deceptive…
The British thriller The Disappearance of Alice Creed is a taut exercise in psychological manipulation, driven by three forceful performances, most notably actress Gemma Arteton (Clash of the Titans) as the titular abductee. On the surface, Disappearance seems to be cut from familiar cloth: ex-cons Eddie Marsan (Sherlock Holmes) and Martin Compston plot out and then execute the kidnapping of Arteton, the daughter of a wealthy businessman, for a sizable ransom. But as the minutes tick by in their dreary holding cell of a flat, relationships develop in unexpected ways, as do shifts in allegiances and motivations. To reveal these seismic changes would be to unleash spoilers of epic proportions, but suffice it to say that few will have expected the film's frenzied conclusion. Directed by first-timer J Blakeson with an eye towards pacing and atmosphere, The Disappearance of Alice Creed should please fans of adult suspense pictures with its smart scripting (by Blakeson) and fearless turns by its cast, especially Arteton in a role that requires her to play, by turns, victim and perpetrator; the DVD includes commentary by Blakeson, who discusses his influences (among them, Alien, interestingly enough), as well as two extended scenes with commentary and a collection of comic outtakes. A five-minute storyboard comparison, which shows preproduction sketches of the opening alongside the finished product, and the stateside trailer round out the extras. --Paul Gaita
- Audio Commentary with Writer/Director J Blakeson
- "Phones" Deleted Scene (with optional commentary by Writer/Director J Blakeson)
- "Alice Gets The Gun" Extended Scene (with optional commentary by Writer/Director J Blakeson)
- Storyboard Comparison
Top Customer Reviews
All you need to know about the plot is that there are these two men who go through an elaborate series of preparations before kidnapping a young woman, Alice Creed, off the street. One of the most fun things about the movie is how the power shifts from one character to another to another and you're never certain who has the upperhand, who is lying or who will "win" the day. In this way, it is very similar to "Shallow Grave." Eddie Marsan plays the older of the two kidnappers and you've seen him in movies before but never this good. He is very impressive here.
A good one to check out but make sure you have enough time to watch it straight through as the pacing is relentless and you won't be able to turn it off once it begins.
What got me to start watching was Gemma Arterton, a "Bond girl" from the last 007 entry, QUANTUM OF SOLACE. She's gorgeous and very watchable. At the beginning of this film, she's snatched off a street, cuffed, gagged, hooded and dragged into a sound-proof apartment. She's also stripped and redressed.
And just when you think you're going to lose interest..."Wow, that's different."
So I'm not going to discuss anymore about this interesting, twisting little film of only three characters.
Just check it out.
The movie opens in an unconventional way...there was no title screen. This was done on purpose, since the writer/director J Blakeson wanted to put us right into the story, and it was quite effective.
I was very impressed by another non-conventional technique: for the first 6 minutes of the film, not a single word is spoken. All we see are two men preparing to do (what we assume are) heinous things. It establishes the mood very effectively - cold, calculating men with a crime to commit.
Over the course of the movie, we learn that kidnapping is a crime with a certain level of intimacy that other crimes don't have. Since the victim has to be cared for, clothed and fed, these two kidnappers become surrogate parents. As a result, there is a lot of emotional transference between all three characters. There are plot twists and revelations throughout the film and this keeps the audience guessing what the final outcome will be, right up to the very end.
Gemma Arterton did a phenomenal job as Alice Creed. Her emotions and reactions felt very true to life; she sold every single scene with her portrayals of fear, despair, humiliation, and empowerment.
Martin Compston was an excellent casting choice as Danny. He reminds me of a young Edward Norton - just as charismatic and professional. Martin had to cover a very broad range of emotions in this movie (no spoilers, I promise!) and he always delivered the goods.
I haven't seen Eddie Marsan in his other films - he did an excellent job as Vic.Read more ›
The two ex convicts Vic (Eddie Marsan's character) and Danny (Martin Compston's character) put into action a plan to take hostage a rich family's only daughter Alice (Gemma Arterton's character) for ransom. I can't give anything else because it will ruin the experience, but trust me on this, this is a good thriller. You would think that with just a few actors it will be a boring movie, but this movie is anything but boring.
There may be objectionable material for some viewers (explicit sex scenes).
Thumbs up, highly recommended.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Gemma is always gorgeous, probably bumping my rating up. Didn't have high expectations but a very basic movie that was somewhat predictable.Published 5 months ago by Shawn B