Culpable (The Guilty) premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 11 and will have a short theatrical run beginning September 24 to premiere on Netflix globally on October 1, 2021.
CULPABLE, the director’s “new” film Antoine Fuqua (Training Day, The Equalizer) starring Jake Gyllenhaal (Donnie Darko, Enemigos, Nightcrawlers) It is actually a remake of the acclaimed Danish thriller “Den skyldige” from 2018 and although the most purists might dismiss it with the sentence of “Better See the Original”, the truth is that many people (like me) were not aware of its existence. There is much to rescue from this new version, including the fact that it will most likely become a great success for Netflix, causing many to turn to see the excellent original work of Gustav Möller.
The script of Nic Pizzolato (True Detective) remains fairly loyal to the original premise albeit with a few changes near the end and a social commentary that perhaps was superfluous, but doesn’t get in the way.
GUILTY low-budget original, which made Denmark’s shortlist to compete as a Foreign Film at the Oscars, cost less than $ 600,000 and was deliberately obscure; By comparison, the Fuqua version is high-tech and tweaks the ending in a way that arguably is a bit more Hollywood. But it feels similar: a more or less real-time race by a 911 operator to find out what’s going on with a panicked woman calling from a vehicle where she is being held against her will.
Gyllenhaal plays Joe Baylor, an ER dispatcher who clearly has demons of his own and does not do this job of his own accord. He gets excited quickly, talks obscenities, does not respect basic negotiation rules and protocols, and offends his co-workers. Everything changes when he receives a call from a woman who pretends to be talking to her son so as not to reveal that she has actually called for help with what Joe considers a kidnapping in progress.
From there, Emily’s case becomes an obsession for Joe. It involves the Los Angeles Police Department and the California Highway Patrol, ends up on the phone with Emily’s 6-year-old daughter and desperately tries to piece together the threads of a case that grows more tangled and confused with every piece of information it receives. .
It would not be correct to give more details than that; The most important thing is that we only know what Joe knows and we see and hear what he does. Aside from the opening and closing shots that span all of Los Angeles, along with a brief unfocused flash of a freeway stop Joe has requested, we never leave the two rooms where Joe manages his computer equipment. The cinematographer Maz Makhani achieves a lot with very little, revels in the mix of bright screens and dark shadows that surround Gyllenhaal and the close-ups when making important decisions provoke a feeling of claustrophobia and anxiety that give him dynamism throughout his 90 minutes of duration .
CULPABLE has a great cast that includes Riley Keoug (Emily Lighton), Peter Sarsgaard, Ethan Hawke and Paul Dano but we will never see them on screen. His interactions with Gyllenhaal are done entirely as interlocutors on the phone, so if you watch the movie dubbed (And why the hell would you do that?) it doesn’t matter at all. This simplicity allowed the team to shoot the entire movie in 11 days.
Yes, you can question Fuqua and Pizzolatto’s decision to set the film on a day of devastating forest fires; the stakes are high enough once Emily calls, but this involves us with Joe, because we really feel like this is all happening on the worst day of his life. Fuqua doesn’t really give you time to sit down and think about the details. GUILTY takes place in one location, but moves like a tough and efficient action movie; it’s an exciting ride in an office chair.
GUILTY su earns an honorable place among other prominent telephone action thrillers such as Emergency line (The Call) from Halle berry from 2013 and Deadly Link (Phone Booth) from Colin Farrell from 2002 thanks to Antoine Fuqua puts the weight of the film on the shoulders of Jake Gyllenhaal, his performance is extremely physical and makes us shudder with every decision he makes. Would we have done the same? And after seeing her Would you help a person without thinking twice?
GUILTY trailer with subtitles
- Culpable It premieres October 1 on Netflix, runs for 1 hour and 30 minutes, and is rated R (for adults only) due to its language.
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a remake with a towering Jake Gyllenhaal comes to Netflix