Inescapable (2012)

If good intentions made great movies, then Ruba Nadda’s “Inescapable” would be a slam dunk. Its story of political intrigue and the depths to which corruption is matter-of-fact in foreign and domestic policy has plenty to reel the viewer in, not to mention a number of twists along the way and high-octane action sequences that pop up once in a while and raise the stakes. But ultimately, there’s just something off about the whole thing. Maybe it’s lead Alexander Siddig, whose severe and strained performance never seems to match the tone of any of his co-stars, like he’s acting in scenes alone and being superimposed into the movie later in the editing process. His unreachable performance keeps the audience at bay, so that while you’re able to get into the narrative you’re constantly being yanked out of the intrigue by Siddig’s blankness. There’s also the issue of Marisa Tomei playing a Syrian named Fatima: Tomei is reliably excellent in the role but her casting reeks of white-washing, and it’s a constant distraction that further prevents total dramatic immersion. So, it’s got its moments and fans of foreign spy thrillers might love it, but I personally thought it was pretty OK at best.

Rating: ★★★ (out of 5)

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