The plot may be old hat, but there’s plenty to look at in Closed Circuit, where a significant amount of the action is seen from the point of view of the surveillance cameras that give the film its name. The editing helps that conceit with sharp, rapid cuts from one storyline to another almost as if we're watching multiple stories play out at the same time. Bana said the film speaks to "...how much we're watched and how much information is being controlled, and to the reduced lack of privacy in society in general." This is especially true in London, one of the most monitored cities in the world. It's also one of the most iconic; the shiny beauty of the modern city contrasts nicely with the murky story of terrorism and corruption. It may not offer anything new, but at least Closed Circuit is a thinking person's alternative to fluff.

CAUTIONS:

  • Drugs/Alcohol: One character admits to a heroin addiction; a man admits to being a drug dealer. Some social drinking (beer and wine); a man is answers the question “are you drunk” with “not yet.” Brief smoking of cigarettes and cigars.
  • Language/Profanity: The f-word makes several appearances, more often as an adjective than an exclamation. Basta** and pr**k also heard.
  • Sex/Nudity: Married couple is shown in bed (sleeping) before he is dragged out wearing only pajama bottoms. There are multiple references to an extra-marital affair between two characters with a brief flashback to their time together, but nothing explicit beyond kissing. Reference made to “the queer guy.” Woman removes her blouse but is wearing a camisole underneath.
  • Violent/Frightening/Intense:  There’s not a lot of violence, but it does tend to be of the “made you jump” variety when it does appear. A car crash. Both a man and a woman are attacked; she fights off a man attempting to strangle her with a garrote, he hits a man over the head with a pipe. A man is murdered; we briefly see his body from a distance.
  • Spiritual Themes: At a funeral for a suicide victim the vicar uses it to remind the mourners that “everyone needs God.” There’s a conversation-worthy subtext to the plot about what constitutes justice and how far an individual can or should go to see that justice is done.

Publication date: August 28, 2013