Directed by: J Blakeson
Written by:J Blakeson
Starring: Gemma Arterton, Martin Compston, Eddie Marsan
Released: September 9, 2010
Grade: A-

The Disappearance Of Alice Creed begins with an eerie musical montage.  We watch Vic (Marsan) and Danny (Compston) go about their preparations.  They go into a hardware store and buy reams of soundproof foam.  They staple plastic sheets to the walls of their mini van.  They attach numerous locks to the bedroom door in their apartment. It’s taken a lot of planning and a lot of work but everything is now is in place.  The time has come.

So what exactly are these two guys are up to?  They’re going to kidnap Alice Creed (Arterton), the daughter of a very wealthy businessman.  They’ll demand a huge random, flee the country and be set for life.

That’s about all I feel comfortable revealing in this review.  If you like a good twist, then this is the next film you must see.  Your eyes will be glued to the screen, wondering what unexpected plot developments lay ahead.  I could make an argument that there are few too many surprises but that said, this isn’t trying to be an Oscar winning drama.  It’s a craftily written tale which takes great pleasure in teasing the audience.

I also have a great respect for the way in which writer-director J Blakeson (his first name isn’t listed in the credits) has tried to distinguish his film from your regular thriller.  There are only three characters in the entire movie.  Whilst I’m sure that’s helped save on costs, it helps build the intensity of the situation.  We don’t meet the father of the kidnapped daughter.  We don’t see the police and what they’re up to.  Our attention is focused solely on these three people and their actions inside a small apartment.

It’s a brave choice of role for Gemma Arterton (Prince Of Persia) who spends most of the film handcuffed to a bed with a ball-gag in her mouth.  When she needs to use the bathroom, the kidnappers simply pull down her pants and have her urinate into a plastic container.  Arterton delivers an emotive performance which required screaming, crying and a great deal of patience.  As the kidnappers, Eddie Marsan (Happy-Go-Lucky) and Martin Compston (Sweet Sixteen) are also very good.

I realise the subject matter might be confronting for some but if you’re prepared to give it a go, I think you’ll find The Disappearance Of Alice Creed a very interesting movie.