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Rendition (2007)

Duration 2h 2m Rating (UK) 15
Source of story Loosely based on the story of a man spirited away by the CIA because his name was similar to that of a man who had, apparently, been in contact with two 9/11 suspects. He was held for 5 months in a covert prison where he was interrogated and tortured.
Writers/Script Kelley Sane
Additional Info Just a bit of a heads up. There is a slightly tricky time component in this outing. I’m not sure if it quite works, but it adds drama – so be prepared.
Director Gavin Hood
Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Reese Witherspoon, meryl Streep, Alan Arkin, Peter Sarsgaard, Omar Metwally, Igal Naor, J.K. Simmons, Zineb Oukach
Elevator Pitch The CIA abduct an Egyptian chemical engineer on the arrival of his flight from South Africa and have him flown to a North African city where he is tortured in order for him to reveal his association with a man who has apparently been telephoning him, under the supervision of an inexperienced CIA analyst. Meanwhile the Egyptian’s pregnant wife has gone to Washington, enlisting the help of a former boyfriend, who is an assistant to a senator, in her attempt to trace her husband. Is he a terrorist? Does it matter?
Content There is a suicide bombing in the North African city, the prisoner is tortured a lot; the wife spends frustrating hours in the halls of power in Washington; the torturer’s daughter has a relationship with a man who might have terrorist links. There is no sex or nudity, but a bit of drinking.
A View This film did not make money, despite being quite liked by some critics. Roger Ebert gave it four stars. This surely reflects the political views of the critics and the potential audience, and the fact that this activity would probably be sanctioned by some, and abhorred by others. It is a worthy and extremely grim film, which must have taken some courage to finance and make. Watch it if you want to see how rendition might have worked.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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