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Closed Circuit
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Reviews & Ratings for
Closed Circuit More at IMDbPro »

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62 out of 81 people found the following review useful:

You're so sly, but so am I

8/10
Author: Greg Mullins from Boca Raton, FL
31 August 2013

It was a bit difficult getting up the motivation to do a write up for this one, as it does not inspire. But it is very believable, with a realistic feel in script and action. Both sharp and taut throughout, this is meant to be more intellectually stimulating than adrenaline releasing. A movie that makes you think. I found the tone and atmosphere, at least in part, to be comparable to Roman Polanski's recent effort in The Ghost Writer.

There seems to be a resurgence in recent years in both the practice of and appreciation for the well honed tension that Hitchcock was famous for. This has some of that. It seems that making what most would call a good movie was not the aim here, as much as having something to say, and wanting it said well. Which it was. What was said bothers you a bit, after.

If you combined elements of the legal drama in Syriana, the syntax of a big brother government in Enemy of the State, along with the perfect pace and proper tension in The Ghost Writer, you'll have an idea of the movie. Perhaps that's what he was aiming at. It isn't as good as any of those films. But definitely worth seeing if you want something more cerebral.

Without giving anything away, it seems they were very clever in an almost feigned attempt at a happy ending. A bit of psychological warfare I think. You'll have to see it to know what I'm talking about. Much too lite for such a serious threat. But then, that was probably the intention. It kind of helps drive it home and makes it stick to you. Some complained about it being too short. I do want my money's worth, but I don't think the time affected the quality of the movie.

http://fullgrownministry.wordpress.com/2013/07/29/no-anxious-thought/

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60 out of 86 people found the following review useful:

Intense, suspenseful but most importantly of all, it leaves you thinking.

10/10
Author: Coco Rachelle from Canada
2 September 2013

After seeing this film you'll find even the low ratings it's received on IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes to be strangely suspicious. It just leaves you questioning all of the things you really need to be question right now, especially with the current trial of the recent Boston Bombings. The whole movie actually holds an eerie resemblance to the whole case and does put certain ideas out there. Which is exactly where they need to be. Out here, with us, in the public. But in the end it's JUST movie, right? I see it as more of a message. It was brilliant and exactly what the world needs right now. Not only was the message perfect, but the movie was suspenseful and intense and so far the reviews don't seem to match up to the movie I saw... What's going on here, did we actually see the same movie!? I guess perception is what determines that one.

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52 out of 75 people found the following review useful:

A good sign

8/10
Author: lettersfromearth from Atlanta Ga
31 August 2013

This movie should cast a dubious eye on those patriots who always believe all that our governments tell us.It is very encouraging that this movie even got made.Viewers have come a long way from the 70's and earlier when the rah-rah fawning sycophant factor was a much greater percentage of the public than it is now.We've got a long way to go,but it looks like were are catching on.Hooray.Go see this one.It points out what we are up against.The acting is quite good;especially Bana and Broadbent.The closed circuit TV's are an interesting analogy to explain the understandable paranoia of the people in charge.They should be paranoid.If enough people figure out what's really going on;all the cameras in the world won't save them.

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27 out of 33 people found the following review useful:

Just google dc madam...

Author: Alexia Verona (idontknowiknowthatidontknow) from United States
28 August 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

...and you shall see that her story and the movie have many similarities. After the dc madam announced on a national radio show that she planned to reveal bombshells regarding exactly which senior politicians and government officials that have patronized her Washington D.C. based brothel in an upcoming trial and repeatedly saying that she would not commit suicide, they hung her a few days later(ahem, i meant she hung herself). Just another typical case of the government taking out the garbage in order to maintain the status quo.

This is a most excellent thriller, and one that is very realistic in depicting the way things are nowadays. People are suicided(ahem, I mean commit suicide)in order to maintain the status quo for the powers behind the governments. It makes me angry because I'm a very righteous person, and I don't believe the powers that be should have the power to kill anyone that are against them who are for freedom and greater transparency. But now they got devices that can make you have a heart attack and can be operated remotely from long distance. So what can you do? How do you fight against that?

This thriller is full of intrigue and the sober realities of the current police/control states that we now live in. I don't know when, but I'm sure another modern day French Revolution is highly likely and what do you know? History repeats itself.

Look for a hair raising performance by Anne-Marie Duff as the "civil servant".

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38 out of 55 people found the following review useful:

A flawed movie that deals with an important theme.

7/10
Author: PWNYCNY from United States
1 September 2013

Closed Circuit is a good, although unexceptional, suspense movie. The movie has a strong start but a weak finale, and somewhere in the middle looses stream and starts plodding along to its inevitable conclusion. The story itself tests the limits of plausibility and features principal characters who have little warmth and fail to generate much empathy. The question of government duplicity is treated in an unimaginative manner and fails to generate any sense of concern or outrage. Yet the movie does entertain by generating a certain level of tension, albeit watered down. The question of cover up sustains the story and adds an element of tension. Yet there are no heroes which makes the ending anticlimactic. That certain scenes are set at a football game is unoriginal. Further, the alleged victim of a miscarriage of justice is hardly worthy of empathy and the same goes for his family, especially the fourteen year old son who belongs in juvenile detention. The acting is cheesy, the cinematography unspectacular, the story twists and turns predictable and the movie theme muddled. Yet, this movie should be watched because it dramatizes what happens when the truth is suppressed and transparency is discarded in favor of secrecy.

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18 out of 24 people found the following review useful:

Closed Circuit Has The Thrills

Author: LoveYourMovies from Buffalo, New York
24 August 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

One of last year's highly praised films was Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. Any intriguing film with very fine acting but had some of the most dry uninteresting moments of the year. With a good ending saving it, it's action and thrills were VERY subdued.

The producers of Soldier Spy have a new political thriller starring Eric Bana, Rebecca Hall and Julia Stiles. This time around there is no shortage of thrills and intense moments. The action isn't Terminator worthy but is without a doubt they have amped up the excitement.

Martin is a divorced lawyer who is called in to defend the suspect in the biggest terror attack in London and largest murder trial of the century. His co-lawyer is Claudia Simmons- Howe who just happens to be his ex lover and reason for his divorce. As I have zero understanding of British law and court system I am at the mercy of what the movie tells me. The two defending attorney's are not allowed to have contact during the pre trial research which proves to be most difficult as the case unfolds, and not for romantic purposes. Martin was brought in to be the defense because a friend of his who was the defense lawyer appears to have committed suicide. As Martin and Claudia dig deeper they realize that is not the case and their client is not who the prosecution is making him out to be. The defendant's son is the one who holds the key to his fathers innocence and Martin and Claudia are determined to make sure he can exonerate his father.

There is only a handful of problems I had with Closed Circuit and the main one being that the film is way too short. Coming in at just over 90 minutes, the extra time could have been used to develop the backstory a little deeper and explain some things that are taken for granted and left unspoken. Martin has a son himself and it would have been nice to see a little more developed with him.

That said, Closed Circuit is without a doubt a top notch ride of excitement. With questions and wonder around every corner you can't help but keep your eyes locked on the screen.

Well thought out story lines make for a great political thriller that does not try and make a political statement, it just showed what we all know and that is most governments have their corrupt side and will at times do whatever it takes to save face. The film does not come across as a film with a message by any means but the government is the engine at the center of a good story and high powered thrill.

This will not be any award contender by any means but thats not to take away from the entertainment value that the film exudes. It is one well worth your time, no matter how little the time is. Loveyourmovies.com

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19 out of 26 people found the following review useful:

How do you mess up a good hand?

5/10
Author: rob o'cop from japan
24 December 2013

Well watch this film to find out. Good actors, great locations, beautiful cinematography, what's left? oh, script and direction. Actually it's not that simple, It's hard to figure out just what is bad about this film. The pacing is out, it comes across as kinda boring, making out the sinister in the mundane and then turning down the heat. The all powerful unstoppable MI5 apparently has only a handful of operatives. The same people seem to be on 24 our call to do cliché henchmen work. Organisations that are all knowing and powerful seem to trip over their feet in the next scene. The ending (don't fight it, it's bigger than the both of us and in the end it is for the public good) was a decent point to make, but oh what a crappy way of making it. This film ended up being confused instead of exciting and intriguing. What a waste of good resources.

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19 out of 26 people found the following review useful:

Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what your country is doing in secret; then, again, you may not want to know

8/10
Author: Amy Adler from Toledo, Ohio
3 September 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Martin (Eric Bana) is out rowing on the Thames when he gets a call. An attorney, he has just been asked to defend a Middle Eastern terrorist accused of masterminding a truck bomb that killed 120 people in the heart of London. Most unfortunately, the previous defense attorney has committed suicide. Its a very sticky case, obviously, and working with Martin will be a special court advocate for the defendant, too, Claudia (Rebecca Hall). Ah, but here's the rub. Martin and Claudia were an item some years ago and if the Attorney General (Jim Broadbent) knew of this, it would be the end of Martin's and Claudia's careers, for they have both sworn in court that there is nothing in their pasts which would compromise the case. Curiously, at the funeral of the deceased attorney, Martin gets a calling card from the New York Times, to which he does not respond. All too soon, things get even stickier. Claudia comes back to her office to find that secret service has entered in with a duplicate key, assigning an agent to her case, as he tells her. She promptly has the locks changed. Then, in the course of interviewing his client, Martin soon discovers that everything is not as it seems. The man's name might not even be his, along with other, more serious falsehoods. How can Martin be expected to defend a man who might be a fall guy for the British secret service? Will he and Claudia's lives be at risk as they dig for the truth? As I sat down to watch this film, a trailer for another one came on the screen: The Fifth Estate. It deals with, it seems, the case of Julian Assange. What a harbinger for the doings in Closed Circuit! This is because the movie's theme is, even in an open democracy, our governments cannot disclose every secret thing. National Security, the top officials proclaim, must be protected, even to the point of covering up tragic mistakes or ill-conceived operatives. Naturally, the prevalence of hidden cameras everywhere will aid the government in its actions. If anyone gets in the way of this "protection", there will be sacrificial lambs. As the chosen "sheep", Bana and Hall are truly great, while Broadbent, Ciaran Hinds, Julia Stiles, and all of the supporting cast are equally fine. Especially spooky is Anne-Marie Duff as a senior government agent The London setting is glorious, as its beauty is self evident, and the use of shots from the closed circuits are mixed in well. Costumes and photography are stunning, too, while the script and marvelous tantilizers. With its weighty matters being able to be defended and condemned at the same time, tongues will wag after any showing. So, get it on the conversation and see it soon.

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31 out of 50 people found the following review useful:

Exciting thriller that makes us wonder...

Author: Manuela Goren from United States
20 August 2013

With good performances and good chemistry from Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall, "Closed Circuit" is an exciting legal thriller that makes you wonder whether there may be something about those conspiracy theories that we have all heard since 9/11. Beautifully crafted, the film will keep you on the edge of your seat and inform you about the British legal system. If, toward the end, it turns a bit into the realm of make believe, it is all done in a way where the protagonists never seem so far fetched in their actions that all of a sudden the film turns into Mission Impossible. Everyone knows that this IS possible and it's what makes the film good.

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31 out of 53 people found the following review useful:

Disappointing, but it will always have London.

Author: John DeSando (jdesando@columbus.rr.com) from Columbus, Ohio
28 August 2013

"From infancy on, we are all spies; the shame is not this but that the secrets to be discovered are so paltry and few." John Updike

Thrillers involving international heavy weights like the super British spy agency, MI5, are durable, reeking of intrigue and inscrutability. Such is the case of Closed Circuit with its terrorism incident killing scores of civilians and a subsequent trial at Old Bailey, where Martin Rose (Eric Bana) has been appointed defense counsel for accused spy, Farroukh Erdogan (Denis Moschitto). Many questions are unanswered before the trial, not the least of the answers sealed in documentation not even the accused may see.

The plot has intelligent qualities; the execution not so. Martin's colleague, Claudia (Rebecca Hall), is a special advocate for the defense—only she may see the secret information. Unfortunately they had an affair, a fact that may compromise their case. One of the main players in the investigation is a young boy, a plot turn with possibilities but never fully exploited.

And so it goes, nothing really new after that. Some good guys turn out to be bad, MI5 is not transparent, and the accused is not who we thought he was. The closed circuit motif, introduced at the titles and interspersed throughout, is not as important as the title and occasional shots would suggest. Except for the shots of London around the Eye, nothing seems to be worth spending millions on the film for.

After the secrets have been revealed and the plot twist dutifully rendered, you may leave the theater feeling you missed something. You didn't. It's all a part of the requirements of the genre, perhaps a comforting feeling that you knew it all along. As for me, I missed what it could have been in my favorite city in the world.

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