cell 211
cell 211
Image: gff press

Film Review

Film title
Cell 211
Director
Daniel Monzon
Starring
Luis Tosar, Alberto Ammann, Antonio Resines
Release date
15 Jul
Certificate
18

Cell 211

5/5 stars
Film review by Chris Buckle.
Published 11 July 2011

In a film full of lobe-searing scenes, Cell 211's opening – in which a tormented prisoner improvises a blade from a cigarette butt and opens his arteries – burns itself in the mind particularly strongly. It sets a visceral tone that never lets up, as rookie guard Juan Oliver (Alberto Ammann) finds himself caught up in a prison riot ahead of his first day on the job. Disguising himself as a prisoner, he quickly earns the trust of chief con Malamadre (Luis Tosar), while wardens and politicians try to protect the father-to-be and rescue the ETA terrorists being held hostage.

The results are morally complex, a quality obviously appreciated by The Goyas, who showered the film with eight awards (and if there was a ‘best casting director’ award, it would have been a shoe-in for that too – the prisoners are terrifyingly believable). Any dips into melodrama are levelled out by its unpredictability, sympathies shifting multiple times in a kaleidoscope of greys that refuses to settle into blacks and whites.

 

Comments (0)

Add a comment »
  • There are no comments yet. Why not post one?
Leave a comment on this article