A convert to Islam sends the U.S. government a tape showing him in three nondescript storage rooms, each of which may contain a nuclear bomb set to detonate in less than a week. Helen Brody, an FBI agent in L.A., is tasked with finding the bombs while a CIA "consultant," known as H, interrogates the suspect who has allowed himself to be caught. The suspect, whose wife and children have left him and disappeared, seems to know exactly what the interrogation will entail. Even as H ratchets up the pressure, using torture over Brody's objection, the suspect doesn't crack. Should H do the unthinkable, and will Brody acquiesce? Is any Constitutional principle worth possible loss of life? Written by
Wow... this is one of the best films I have ever seen hands-down, regardless the low ratings many other reviewers have given it thus far.
While the premise of the movie is a bit far-fetched, the film itself is superb and has an excellent cast, great acting and a good script. Overall, the film is very realistic and thought-provoking.
While I completely understand why many assert that this is 137 minutes of pro-torture propaganda (like the hit TV series "24"), I completely disagree. I feel that more than anything, it shines a spotlight on the human condition. It captivates the viewer and forces us to question how far we are willing to go to save lives, and whether or not we are willing to sacrifice our vary humanity to do so. At what point are we willing to do the "unthinkable" and thereby give up some of the things that truly make us human?
Warning, this film is extremely graphic and at times hard to bear and while it is not for the faint-hearted, I still encourage every mature adult to watch it. I do not believe the extreme violence has been added for shock value or entertainment, but rather to shake the hell out of the audience in order to make them reflect upon their humanity and what it means to be human.
Also, while I do believe that having yet another film depicting the bad guy/terrorist as a Muslim does have the potential of perpetuating certain negative stereotypes about Islam and Muslims, I feel that the "bad guy" could have just as easily been from any another religious tradition or political ideology and I did not consider it to be offensive or deliberately anti-Muslim and I say this as a Muslim myself.
I was thoroughly engaged till the very end and was left absolutely speechless, staring at the screen. This was only the second time that has happened in my life and I am still absorbing and contemplating what I witnessed.
FINAL RATING: 9/10 hands down. A must watch film for every mature human being. But, I'd advise you to save the snacks until AFTER the credits roll.
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