8 items from 2014
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: a grizzled father clashes with a troubled detective as they search for the former’s missing daughter in the dead of winter, in this thriller from a Canadian director. You’re stopping me? Great. We’re not talking about Denis Villenueve’s strikingly moody, logically suspect Prisoners, though, but Atom Egoyan’s similarly titled and thoroughly lunkheaded The Captive. Before the opening credits have ended, we meet not only the captive herself, a teenage girl named Cassandra (Alexia Fast), but her captor, Mika (Kevin Durand), a preening real estate developer with a suitably pervy mustache. It’s been eight years since Cassandra’s abduction near Niagara Falls, but Mika has only recently begun taunting her estranged parents, Matthew (Ryan Reynolds) and Tina (Mireille Enos), covertly broadcasting their renewed anguish for an unseen audience and still stumping the authorities, chief among them Detectives Dunlop (Rosario Dawson) and Cornwall (Scott Speedman »
- William Goss
Cannes – Friday May 16th
The first title out of the gate at this morning’s 8:30 a.m. showing was the first of three Canadian films in the Main Competition. Snatched up earlier by the A24 folks, starring Ryan Reynolds, Scott Speedman, Rosario Dawson and Mireille Enos, The Captive landed mostly 2 star notes with our panel, unfortunately making Atom Egoyan’s kidnapping thriller the first misfire of the fest. Winner of the Grand Prix and the International Critic’s Prize by the F.I.P.R.E.S.C.I.for The Sweet Hereafter in 1997, the Canuck has been at the fest’s Directors’ Fortnight for Speaking Parts (1989) and The Adjuster (1991) and found a home in the official selections for six features: Exotica (1994), Felicia’s Journey (1993), Ararat (2002 – Out of Comp), Where the Truth Lies (2005) and 2008′s Adoration.
Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s over three hour dialogue driven drama occupied a one time showing 3:00 p. »
- Eric Lavallee
Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan has been a fixture on La Croisette since his 1994 breakout feature "Exotica," which took the Fipresci prize. "The Sweet Hereafter" won that same award in addition to the Grand Prix honor in 1997. The filmmaker's career has by no means taken a nosedive since, but to many, he hasn't lived up to the promise set by his earlier efforts (save for "Felicia's Journey," which featured a great performance by the late Bob Hoskins). "Where the Truth Lies," "Adoration" and "Chloe" were all met with mixed reviews, while his latest to open in theaters, the West Memphis Three drama "Devil's Knot," was his worst reviewed effort to date. His last two films ("Chloe" and "Devil's Knot") weren't given a Cannes berth, so early signs pointed to "The Captive" being a likely comeback for Egoyan. Unfortunately, according to the majority of critics in the room for today's world premiere at Cannes, »
- Nigel M Smith
Atom Egoyan’s 14th feature tells a tale of lost children and grieving parents unfolding under wintry gray skies, but otherwise we’re about as far removed from the mastery of “The Sweet Hereafter” as we could be in “The Captive,” a ludicrous abduction thriller that finds a once-great filmmaker slipping into previously unentered realms of self-parody. Attempting to meld his traditional preoccupations with guilt and bereavement, voyeuristic technology and achronological storytelling with a “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit”-style procedural, Egoyan leaves a strong cast flailing to keep up with a contrived and fatally unconvincing drama that makes the recent “Prisoners” look like a masterpiece in retrospect. News of the film’s acquisition by U.S. distrib A24 broke shortly before its press screening at Cannes, where it was greeted with a smattering of boos; beyond the Croisette, mass indifference rather than contempt seems the likely reaction.
- Justin Chang
After making a name for himself with moody dramas like "Exotica" and "The Sweet Hereafter," Atom Egoyan hit a rough patch with a slew of uneven, mopey efforts, including the brooding "Adoration" and courtroom drama "The Devil's Knot," which opened last week. Now we have the premiere of Egoyan's kidnapping procedural "The Captive," which suggests the director has receded from the challenging work that put him on the map in the first place. A lazily plotted and largely generic thriller, leading man Ryan Reynolds seizes yet another opportunity to tackle a darker, contemplative role while Egoyan's cerebral efforts only serve to underscore the by-the-books melodrama. They only emerge unscathed because "The Captive" is so forgettable. Like "Chloe," this film applies Egoyan's ponderous approach to genre conventions. But while "Chloe" devolved into camp, "The Captive" humorlessly plunges into a morose world riddled with bite-sized versions of the tragedies that often lie at. »
- Eric Kohn
The 2014 Cannes Film Festival launches on Wednesday, and with it comes a slew of films sure to shock, surprise and provoke, just as last year's Palme d'Or winner "Blue is the Warmest Color" did when it world premiered at the event. Here are 10 films that could potentially follow suit. "The Captive," dir. Atom Egoyan Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan has been a fixture on La Croisette since his 1994 breakout feature "Exotica," which took the Fipresci prize. "The Sweet Hereafter" won that same award in addition to the Grand Prix honor in 1997. The filmmaker’s career has by no means taken a nosedive since, but to many, he hasn’t lived up to the promise set by his earlier efforts (save for "Felicia’s Journey," which featured a great performance by the late Bob Hoskins). "Where the Truth Lies," "Adoration" and "Chloe" were all met with mixed reviews, while his latest, the »
- Eric Kohn and Nigel M. Smith
Welcome back to Cannes Check, In Contention's annual preview of the films in Competition at next month's Cannes Film Festival, which kicks off on May 14. Taking on different selections every day, we'll be examining what they're about, who's involved and what their chances are of snagging an award from Jane Campion's jury. Next up, the third Canadian director in the lineup: Atom Egoyan's "The Captive." The director: Atom Egoyan (Canadian, 53 years old). There was a time when Egoyan looked to be as estimable a festival fixture as his compatriot David Cronenberg, but his career hasn't moved in the direction many thought it would after he won big at Cannes (and scooped a surprise Best Director Oscar nod) for 1997's critical peak “The Sweet Hereafter.” Born in Cairo to Armenian-Egyptian parents – a heritage he'd later explore in his 2002 film “Ararat” – Egoyan largely grew up in British Columbia and studied »
- Guy Lodge
Refurbished: Surnow’s Debut a Casserole of Cliché
Seasoned television writer and producer Joel Surnow makes his directorial debut with Small Time, based on an autobiographical screenplay he wrote in the mid-1970s and has since retooled. While exuding a certain amount of polish that confirms an understanding of look and tone, the film feels resoundingly cliché and inescapably dull. Despite originating from the creator’s own life experiences, the film feels overtly familiar, to such a degree that it fails to resonate visually, emotionally, or narratively. Humdrum in every sense of the word, Surnow’s film may indeed be a passion project made for his own enjoyment; unfortunately, it fails to be of particular interest to anyone else.
- Nicholas Bell
8 items from 2014
IMDb.com, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.See our NewsDesk partners