Fails to Captivate
"Captivity" was originally intended as a thriller but at some point someone decided to turn it into torture porn and ordered various parts to be reshot, if you don't believe me check out Elisha Cuthbert's changing hair for proof. Now there is nothing wrong with reshooting a movie to give it a different focus but there is when it makes it little more than masturbation material for those who get their kicks from torture movies. I'm sorry but what gets shown in "Captivity", or at least during the first half, isn't clever or frightening but purely sick with one act of torture following another with little story to connect them. By the time the story finally presents itself during the second half you've given up which isn't a bad thing because it's not good anyway.
Top cover girl Jennifer (Elisha Cuthbert - House of Wax) heads to a charity event only to discover that she has been stood up, not only that but someone has spiked her drink and on feeling queasy goes to leave. The next thing she knows she is waking up in a small brick room where some hooded sicko not only shows her videos of people being tortured but also toys with her with torture devices. Who is this sicko, why is he torturing her and is she the only one being held captive?
Right from the start "Captivity" goes for the jugular as we watch a nameless victim die on a torture table, it's meant to be unpleasant and certainly is and for a spilt moment makes you intrigued. Why has this person being killed in such a diabolical way, fluid pumped into them through there nose, a body cast forcing them to take it. And then we meet Jennifer, a model whose picture is in every magazine and on every billboard and we becomes aware that someone is following her. So little surprise when she gets kidnapped and wakes in a dark and dirty cell where some faceless sicko watches her on CCTV.
It's a rough start, unsettling and raw but it does lead you to wonder why Jennifer is being targeted and by who. But then what we get from here for the entire first half of "Captivity" is torture, there is Jennifer being tortured, there is footage of people being tortured there is even a dog involved in one of these tortures and it becomes nothing more than one torture scene after another. The story doesn't progress but serves up masturbation material for those who get their kicks from watching people suffer in diabolical ways and much of what we see is diabolical. Yes I know "Captivity" is just a horror movie but trust me it comes over as something surprisingly sick because of it being one torture scene after another.
It's not until the second half of "Captivity" that the amount of torture calms down and we get a few twists and of course the element of whether Jennifer will get out or not. But the twists are not only obvious but a scene involving a couple of detectives is so wrong in so many ways it makes it a joke. And so is what follows where we have screaming girl syndrome turned action woman. It is sort of obvious that someone felt this story wasn't strong enough for a whole movie and they were right but then the decision to throw in so many torture scenes was just a bad decision full stop.
As for the acting well disappointing is really the only word which comes to mind because we have characters who do things which don't make sense in the real world. But in truth "Captivity" is also a waste of talent especially when it comes to Elisha Cuthbert who as Jennifer has seemed to have been cast not because the character called for much acting but for someone who is beautiful.
What this all boils down to is that "Captivity" is poor from start to finish with little in any form of redemption. The fact that the first half is nothing more than one torture scene after another and that is followed by a weak storyline makes it a movie where there is nothing to really get into, unless your thing is watching people get tortured for no reason what so ever.