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Retreat (I) (2011)

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Reviews: 45 user | 83 critic

Kate and Martin escape from personal tragedy to an Island Retreat. Cut off from the outside world, their attempts to recover are shattered when a Man is washed ashore, with news of airborne killer disease that is sweeping through Europe.

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Mrs. Doug
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Storyline

In a last-ditch attempt to save their failing marriage after the stillbirth of their first child, Kate, a journalist, and Martin, an architect, escape London for a retreat to the beautiful, yet remote and unpopulated Blackholme Island, which is off the west coast of Scotland. Fairweather Cottage is a place where they once shared a romantic holiday and the island holds fond memories of happier times. Kate and Martin arrive by boat, it's autumn and the rocky barren moors are blown by freezing winds and the before they've even settled in, the generator and CB radio communication start to fail. Their relationship is already fragile and anxieties are pushed higher when they lose all contact with the mainland and after a heavy storm, an injured man is washed up on the shore. Dressed in military fatigues and carrying a gun, the mysterious stranger regains consciousness and identifies himself as a British soldier called Private Jack Corman and he soon reveals that he carries a deadly message ... Written by Vertigo Films

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

island | retreat | boat | virus | washed ashore | See more »

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No neighbours. No help. No escape. See more »

Genres:

Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and for language throughout | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

26 April 2012 (Bahrain)  »

Also Known As:

A Recuperação  »

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2.35 : 1
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Trivia

Cillian Murphy replaced Jason Isaacs. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent Acting Elevates Flawed Story
18 July 2011 | by (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) – See all my reviews

"Retreat" is a three-hander, starring Thandie Newton, Cillian Murphy and Jamie Bell (although there is one other character with a brief speaking part). Kate (Newton) and Martin (Murphy) have gone off to an island retreat to regroup after Kate miscarries; they return to a solitary cottage on a remote island where they had been happy years earlier, thinking it might help their relationship. But Kate is withdrawn and Martin doesn't know what to do, and the whole thing might not have been a very good idea after all. One day, they stumble upon Jack (Bell), an injured military man to whom they are quick to offer shelter. Unfortunately, the generator in the cottage has shorted out, and the CB radio seems not to be working, so when Jack tells them that a fast-moving and lethal air-borne infection has been sweeping the world and the only way to protect themselves from it is to barricade themselves inside the cottage, they have no way of knowing whether he's telling the truth or not. But Jack's decisive (and bullying) behaviour convinces at least Martin that something is going on, and although Kate initially resists and suggests that they just leave the cottage to the "crazy" man, she too is more or less bullied into submission. And it is true that something is going on, but whether they can figure it out in time to save themselves is an open question....

This is writer/director Carl Tibbetts' debut film. I expected it to be a very tense psychological thriller, and to some extent it is, but there are flaws that perhaps a more experienced scriptwriter and director could have smoothed out. Largest among these is the simple fact that if Martin had listened to Kate right after Jack shows up, they wouldn't have gotten into this mess. It's hard to swallow disbelief when some plot points are so, well, silly. This is not to pan the film at all – it's sharp, has some beautiful cinematography (it was filmed in Gwynedd, Wales), and a lot of the twists and turns (especially at the end) are unexpectedly rich. But really the best reason to see this film is for the acting; our three leads are just outstanding, with Thandie Newton's performance serving as the focus that holds the whole film together. Definitely recommended.


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