Director: Ruba Nadda
Screenplay: Ruba Nadda
Starring: Alexander Siddig, Morisa Tomei, Jeremy Jackson
Producer: Daniel Iron, Lance Samuels
Running Time: 93 min
BBFC Rating: 12
Shamed Syrian army intelligence officer, Adib Abdul-Kareem (Siddig – Syriana), is now living as a businessman in Toronto. Having kept his previous life from his Canadian family, he is horrified to learn that his daughter has gone missing whilst on a secret trip to Damascus in an attempt to uncover her heritage. Having escaped Syria once, Adib must return and face the inescapable ghosts of his past.
Risking his life, Adib enlists the help of Fatima (Tomei – The Wrestler), his former fiancée, to get back into the country and facilitate access to old acquaintances. Also assisting Adib is Canadian Consulate attaché, Paul (Jackson – TV's Fringe), who may not be as uninformed about the situation as he initially seems.
Inescapable is a tense thriller set in a world of corruption where state sanctioned death is a daily risk. Riding on the coat tails of kidnap movies like Taken, Inescapable does not try to copy the formula, taking a slower paced, less violent route to conclusion. Those that are used to the fast paced action of the aforementioned Taken may find that Inescapable falls a little flat. That is to say, it takes its time establishing characters and keeps detail from the audience for later reveals.
It is as a character piece then that Inescapable shines. Alexander Siddig pulls off an excellent performance as Adib, allowing the audience to empathise with this complicated man being torn apart by his past and present. Adib’s torment is evident in his actions, with Siddig ably communicating his emotions through the screen. The casting of Marisa Tomei as Fatima was unexpected; however she was on fine form and showed why she is a three times nominated and one time Oscar winner.
Inescapable is not without its faults though. We, as an audience, are used to following an investigator unravelling a mystery through logical steps. Yet, at times, this story seems to skip forward so that Adib inexplicably takes an action or arrives at a destination without any reasonable exposition. It is a shame how little action there is on screen, as the story hints at Adib being a formidable operator in his past life, and you are rooting for him to come out on top. The details that are left out to keep the audience guessing may seem promising, but when delivered seem like an anti-climax.
If it is high octane, adrenaline fuelled thrills and spills you are looking for, then Inescapable will not deliver. However, for a well-acted, character driven drama that engages the audience, this fits the bill quite nicely.
Inescapable is available now on DVD, released by Signature Entertainment.
Review by Keiran McGreevy.