Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
Better than Taken, but too many incoherencies
Trade(2007) is a better movie about kidnapping for prostitution than Taken(2008), both as a film and as a vehicle of social awareness. Rather than focusing on a Jack Baur-ish tough guy who storms the thug stronghold and shoots hundreds of people with a pistol, Trade takes a more realistic approach. The police officer tracking down the victims is actually cautious and in fact doesn't so much as knock anyone down the entire film. This leaves the focus on the victims themselves rather than generic bloodlust.
Unfortunately there are quite a few incoherencies that make this film painful at times:
The attempts to poke fun at Americans in Jorge's dialogue with Ray is very predictable and unfunny.
When Veronika and Adriana escape, Veronika sends the 13-year-old Adriana to get the police while she calls her family. Then, when she sees the thugs coming, she continues her phone conversation. This is such an incredibly stupid failure of prioritization that I was disappointed when she committed suicide because I was looking forward to her getting whipped.
Throughout the movie the thug Manuelo's conflict between his religion and his job is highlighted. It seems to lead him either into repentance,suffering for his crimes, or some combination of the two. In the end he helps Adriana escape, but is then hit over the head by Jorge (who somehow, after about 15 minutes, was just then walking the 30 yards or so to the house) and is arrested. He doesn't really repent or pay for his crimes.
When Ray finally gets Adriana out of the house, the cops show up in force. Not only is this completely unnecessary, but Ray previously found out that this case is beyond the local cops jurisdiction as the CIA is waiting to make a big bust.
While the cops are making the bust, Ray realize that the female trafficker who is pointing a gun at his head is his daughter. This would have been a good opportunity for a dramatic dialogue, but the cops are there already so they never speak. At any rate he seems to have forgotten a few minutes later and nothing ever comes of this. The only indication that this is his daughter is that her green eyes flash, which he had mentioned previously. This makes me wonder if this plot twist was not thought of until post-production.
The final scene is of Jorge knifing a trafficker in the back in Mexico. This trafficker was not a memorable or important character, so this is rather insignificant to the viewer.