The Collector (2009)
- Cert: 18
- Details: USA/90mins
- Release Date: 25/06/2010
Desperate for money, and just out of the joint, Arkin breaks into a house he has been doing odd jobs around after his missus gets in deep with a loan shark and needs some dough pronto. But once in the house, he finds the family are being held hostage by a leather-masked nutcase, with a penchant for torture and over-elaborate traps. Soon a cat and mouse game develops between the two, as Arkin tries to find a way out of the house alive, and take the youngest family member, who has been hiding somewhere within, with him.
From the Seven-like opening title sequence, it's fairly obvious what helmer Dunstan was going for here in terms of style. Gritty and cast mainly in darkness, that doesn't mean he follows David Fincher's lead in terms of off-screen killings. Folk here are disposed of in a manner that can only be described as vile, which suits this type of overt horror production well. Close-ups on a blade digging into a hand lingers for longer than is necessary, and people have their innards removed like a pig in a freezer. The motivations for which are never revealed, or really even hinted at.
At the centre of the film is Josh Stewart's convict, thinking of his daughter and desperate to do the right thing once he realises what's going on. A bit like a Jeremy Renner, he's a fine lead, and holds the screen superbly - not always the case with genre efforts. The villain of the piece is a bit of a letdown. He's acting in a terrifying manner, but has no personality or discernible traits to rank him amongst the genre's elite.
It's wince and turn away from the screen cinema, and is directed with forceful style; it might not string together the way it should, or fill in any of the holes its digs itself into, but The Collector is an enjoyable, gory and typically disposable entry to the genre.
Review by Mike Sheridan | 09:00 | Friday 25th June 2010 | Movie Review
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