My, that was intense! Even the second time around,
the movie left me full of suspenseful chills throughout. Barely
any time was left for a breather!
When the son gets kidnapped, the scenes are very strong, with
Gibson's character watching the radio-controlled glider as it seems to
go out of control. It is a good parallel for the fear that takes
the couple. As the ransom note is delivered, you see how much of
a family man he is, because the suitcases of money are there almost immediately.
But the ransomers put the father through too much in delivering
the ransom. They would have been better off if they had picked something
simpler. But then they probably would have been caught by the FBI.
But the father's character is right on when he sees the face of the man
picking up the money: the guy knows nothing about returning his kid.
So on a feeling, he knows the kidnappers don't intend to keep
his kid alive. A completely insane takeover comes next, with the
ransom money turning into a bounty. After the father has gone that
far, there is no turning back. You can sympathize with him, but also
feel the pain of his wife. It is completely uncertain whether this
puts the kid in more danger or not.
I could see the end of the kidnapping coming from the moment
the bounty was announced, but it took circumstances going way beyond control
before it could realistically happen.
But of course, it is not over yet. The first time I saw
this movie, I thought it should have ended about five minutes earlier.
I still believe that now. I think Sinese's character should have
died when he was in the middle of traffic. As it is, he manages to
get away, get pushed through a glass window, get up again, pull a gun,
and is finally killed. That's two lives too many, I think.
But I know it had to end in self defense.
The way Sinese's character was set up was really good.
The way he follows one of the kidnappers back to their lair, looks in on
the tied up boy, then points his gun at the kidnapper. But it's for
a different reason than we think. Really well done.
The whole movie was well done. Wow. My muscles were
so tense by the end of it. That's the sign of a good action movie.
Especially when it happens the second time around, too.