ASK NOT WHY YOU WERE IMPRISONED. ASK WHY YOU WERE SET FREE.
Alcoholic ad executive Joe Doucett (Josh Brolin) is kidnapped and locked up in what looks like a hotel room; after 20 years, he’s released… for a reason. Remaking the 2003 South Korean thriller seems like a strange project for Spike Lee, and the results largely underscore the pointlessness. Admittedly, the film is unpleasant yet attractively shot, with a very good performance by Brolin as the prisoner who changes over the years… but it’s not as interesting and provocative as the original and Sharlto Copley is less compelling as the lunatic behind Brolin’s nightmare.
2013-U.S. 104 min. Color. Widescreen. Directed by Spike Lee. Cast: Josh Brolin (Joe Doucett), Elizabeth Olsen (Marie Sebastian), Sharlto Copley (Adrian Doyle Pryce), Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Imperioli, Max Casella.
Trivia: Christian Bale, Colin Firth, Will Smith and Clive Owen were allegedly considered for the lead; Steven Spielberg for directing duties.