[a.k.a Kidnapped]
Dir: Miguel Angel Vivas
Star: Fernando Cayo, Dritan Biba, Ana Wagener, Manuela Velles

Chris has an inherent problem with home-invasion films, in that she never finds the way the victims behave to be plausible. Mind you, not many homes that get invaded in these kind of flicks, ever have quite so many weapons to hand as might be the case for TC Towers. Anyone who invades us will, at the very least, have some interesting stories to tell, likely finishing with the line, "...and then she came at me with a Klingon Bat'leth". No-one in this Spanish entry is quite so... well-prepared, shall we say. The family of three - father Jaime (Cayo), mother Marta (Wagener) and daughter Isa (Velles) have barely moved into their lovely new house, when three Eastern Europeans arrive and take them hostage. Their leader (Biba) takes Jaime into town to drain their bank accounts of cash, leaving his wife and daughter in the unstable care of the other two. Both halves of the victims make efforts to escape their predicament, only to find themselves dug deeper into the mess as a result.

If competent enough, and with a couple of moments of stunning brutality at the end, including one of the most savage blunt object poundings I've ever seen, there isn't enough, in style and content, to distinguish this from any other entries in the genre. The family appear to be standard boiler-plate characters, particularly the whiny, grating teenage daughter [though I can't argue against the accuracy of that portrayal, that doesn't mean I have to like it], and the attackers occupy a mediocre middle-point between the two effective end-points: being devoid of any apparent humanity at all, and being sufficiently well-rounded they're interesting. They, too, are basically stock elements: the leader, the psycho and the rookie. Throw in situation which are also too well-worn - oh, look: someone's come to the door - and you get something that, while solidly constructed, offers no particular new insights, and thus, no particular reason to watch this one, rather than any other of the many entries in the home-invasion genre.

[September 2015]

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