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RENDITION (2007) MOVIE
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Top Customer Reviews
Based upon one cell phone record and an Islamic name, chemical engineer Anwar El-Ibrahimi (Omar Metwally) is removed from a flight from South Africa to Washington D.C. and sent to an interrogation centre, where he is questioned, beaten and abused for proclaiming his innocence.
The movie uses flashbacks and lots of switching between characters to illustrate the chain reaction that results, and how it affects not only El-Ibrahimi, but also his wife (Reese Witherspoon), his family, an observing CIA analyst (Jake Gyllenhaal), and even his torturer, Abasi Fawal.
In a gripping sub-plot, Fawal's daughter secretly becomes romantically involved with a young man, not knowing that his brother had perished at the hands of her father.
Chilling at times, and maddening at others, especially when Meryl Streep's character gets involved, this movie is about the suffering of the innocent as a result of the sins of a minority. Food for thought, even though it may be a bit too bitter for some tastes.
The concept of officially rejecting torture, yet using vassals to do it for you is hypocritical, immoral, and illegal. The film tries to show in an effective dramatic fashion the dangers of a democratic society determining it licit to covertly arrest and deport an individual without due process of law. In fairness, the film does not offer any enlightenment on how effective counter-terrorism should be done, but it nevertheless puts a human face on the violation of human rights perpetrated on not only the innocent, but even on the guilty in respect to the use of torture.
The only problem with the film, however, is in its heavy handed way of making its point. Too often it comes across as a propaganda film against rendition, and as a consequence the story is too black and white. The film would have been more balanced if it had presented a case with more evidence against the accused, to the point where the audience was not sure of the guilt or innocence of the accused, rather than portray a rendition on the flimsiest of evidence. The film wanted to present American government villains in the most black and white way.
Imaginez un homme car il a reçu un téléphone d'un homme dont il ne connait pas, peu être arrêté, torturé et détenu illégalement le tout sans aucune forme de procès, bien sûr on ne vérifie pas les preuves, après tout elles sont de l'intérieur ces preuves et donc nécessairement fiables... Ne parlons même pas de dignité humaine avec cela, dans de tel trou à rat il n'y a bien guère que ces bêtes pour y être bien...
Un film surprenant donc, intense et qui m'a plutôt embarquer... difficile de voir tout venir les aboutissants du scénario, quelques détails reste bien flou jusqu'à la finale... franchement c'est bien monté et cela rend l'aventure encore plus immersive déjà que le sujet est très accaparant c'est donc une belle réalisation !
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The USG, whose policies oppose any form of torture in this country, sought other means to extract information. Working with other countries whose policies did not ban torture and who were willing to accept these suspected terrorists, the USG sent such suspected terrorists to them. In the process, there was no requirement for due process of law and an individual's rights. Thus, a person could just simply disappear for years and nobody would notify family, friends or legal authorities. The process is called "extraordinary rendition".
The film raises fascinating questions about an individual's rights under such circumstances, vis a vis the safety and future security of our country. Clearly, when an innocent person is caught in this web, we feel horrified, debased and ashamed. But, there are always costs, and if a few individuals are mistakenly tortured when society at large is saved from the greater threat of thousands dying, is rendition an imperfect policy or a necessary strategy to protect this country?
The disc also contains a documentary called "outlawed" which chronicles the real life stories of two men from different parts of the world who underwent such experiences.
The film is beautifully made in the United States and Morocco. Meryl Streep is terrific as the US Government official ordering rendition, as is Omar Metwally, who plays the tortured individual. However, Reese Witherspoon, normally an excellent actress, as the missing man's wife seems to equate being a zombie with acting, giving a very disappointing performance. Jake Gyllenhaal is equally unimpressive as the US Government official assigned to represent the USG during the torture process. The film succeeds despite these two lackluster performances, and is a thriller well worth watching.
What's much more worthy of attention is the documentary "Outlawed", which is featured in the special features on this disc. "Outlawed" tells the story of a German man who was captured and detained for nearly 5 years. In those five years, he was transported between several "underground" prisons in several different locations around the world. The documentary is a long interview with the man recalling his nightmare experience. It is truly riveting. I wept openly when first I saw it.
All in all, the film is a disappointment, but, as I've mentioned, the documentary included in the special features is superb.