In the post-9/11 decade, filmmakers have tried with limited success to capture every aspect of the war on terror. We have seen OK movies about terror cells, deployed soldiers, extremist recruiting, Seal team Six, homegrown terrorists, Bin Laden, government conspiracy and post-traumatic stress. Here we have a movie about a terror attack and subsequent government cover-up. Correction: here we have yet another movie about a terror attack and subsequent government cover-up.
A bomb explosion in a busy London marketplace sends law enforcement and government agencies scrambling to find the responsible parties and bring them to justice. Scotland Yard agents quickly arrest Farroukh Erdogan (Denis Moschitto) as the mastermind behind the terror plot. When the primary defense attorney assigned to the case suddenly commits suicide, Martin Rose (Eric Bana) is the barrister assigned to replace him. Here’s where things get a bit tricky. There is also a defense representative, Claudia Simmons-Howe (Rebecca Hall), assigned to handle the aspect of the prosecution that involves information that could compromise national security. Martin and Claudia must not communicate or exchange information. (The fact that they had an affair only creates the appearance of impropriety.) Nevertheless, when Martin begins to suspect that Farroukh was a spy planted in a terror cell by MI6 the game changes.
Here’s my beef. The movie is called Closed Circuit. The tagline of the film is: ‘they see your every move.’ It seems safe to assume the film would focus on the seemingly endless reach of government surveillance and the wildly inventive ways a protagonist would use to circumvent it. If anything, the film glosses over intrusive technology with a cursory nod (and several drawn out, pointless shots of video camera perched above London streets). That, in my opinion, would have been a really interesting movie. As it is, despite being extremely well-acted, it’s just another OK spy thriller to add to the pile. It’s a 6.