Closed Circuit an intelligent adult mystery
Starring Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall. Rated PG.
It could very well be all the drugs we did once upon a time. In any case, some of us were already pretty paranoid without any help from movies like Closed Circuit, a tense British political thriller that confirms we are all being spied on at all moments. Of course, given the existence of Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, many people will enjoy this thought.
Here’s the gist: after a devastating London terrorist attack, the only suspect still alive, Farroukh Erdogan (Denis Moschitto), is going to trial. Because the government plans to use classified evidence to nail Farroukh, a “special advocate” lawyer named Claudia (Rebecca Hall) is appointed to view the “special material”, something our mothers always warned us against. Farroukh’s defence attorney, Martin (Eric Bana), and Claudia are ex-lovers, which would mean fake bickering in a Hollywood movie, but here incites witty-dry Britishness instead.
There is barely time for humour, however, because suspense and fear rightly take plenty of room. As they begin investigating, Martin and Claudia get the unsettling feeling they are being watched and “manipulated”. Director John Crowley is very good at using security-camera views to exacerbate this feeling. Also, it seems that the sudden death of Martin’s predecessor on the case may not have been a suicide. And an American journalist (Julia Stiles) drops chilling hints and warnings to Martin, and Claudia’s MI5 contact is seriously creepy. Actually, everybody and everything is disconcerting.
The thrills and some diabolical behaviour get a little Hollywood-hyper toward the end. And would smarty-pants Claudia really wear dumbass giant headphones while walking alone at night? But like Three Days of the Condor and other ’70s thrillers, this is a movie for adult persons, with intelligent mystery and acting (Jim Broadbent and Ciarán Hinds also turn up), instead of shiny superhero outfits.
So, recap: trust no one. And everyone is trying to kill you.