Kidnap: Not Much of a Thrilling Roller Coaster Ride

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Kidnap: Not Much of a Thrilling Roller Coaster Ride

Marlie Applegarth

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Actress Halle Berry’s new movie, Kidnap (2017), was just released in August. Berry portrays a mother, Karla, whose son, Frankie (Sage Correa), was taken by two kidnappers while they were enjoying a day at the park. Karla sees the kidnappers drive away and attempts to follow them in her mini van. For the remainder of the movie, she continues looking for her son and focuses on bringing him back to safety. Overall, this movie was very repetitive and predictable, lacking a lot of plot twists and excitement.

Though the movie was not the best, it did have some positive aspects. For example, Kidnap had good casting. Casting Berry for this role was a good decision. She portrays the scared and determined mother very accurately. She adds a lot of emotion to this movie, which is seen as the mother is searching frantically for her son’s kidnappers and her relief when she sees the kidnapper’s car. Berry made a great female protagonist.

Another positive aspect of Kidnap is the action and excitement of the beginning and end of the movie. In the beginning, the little boy, Frankie is kidnapped, and the viewer is drawn in. This is probably the most exciting part of the movie. The end of the movie also provided the viewer some excitement with a plot twist when a few more characters and conflicts were added into the story.

One negative of Kidnap is its lack of originality. The whole plot is focused on someone following a car trying to save a child. There is another movie that has the same plot with some variations that came out in 2012, called, Amber Alert. In this movie, a group friends end up following a car when they recognized it from the Amber Alert. If you’ve watched both movies, you will notice huge similarities in the plot. Kidnap also didn’t carry out the same excitement and intensity into the middle of the movie that was seen in the beginning and end of the movie. The beginning was attention-grabbing because this is when Frankie was kidnapped and in the end there were some new elements added in that made that part more exciting. In the middle, however, the plot seems to get boring and repetitive. Karla drives and searches for her son’s kidnappers. Then she drives, drives, and drives some more, until the end of the movie finally comes and something different happens.

Another negative of Kidnap is its failure to make the viewer connect with it and connect with the characters. It was uninteresting and drab in a lot of parts. The movie did not create a feeling of connection with the characters and what they were going through.

Also, this movie only told the story through one person’s view. Most of the movie focused on Karla and not on Frankie or anyone else, so the only characterization we see in the movie is that of this protective mother. In the beginning of the movie, we see that Karla is a hard-working, single mother. Throughout the film we see her character develop more. We see that she is strong-willed and won’t give up on saving who she loves most, Frankie. Though the portrayal of her is good, the viewers still weren’t provided with a strong attachment to her character and weren’t able to connect to any other characters because they weren’t developed as much as Karla. This made the movie boring and uninteresting.

Though there were a few elements of this film that were able to make it more interesting. This includes the soundtrack. The soundtrack of Kidnap added to the excitement of the action-packed sections, such as when Karla first realized that her son was being kidnapped. It creates a suspenseful feeling and a sense of longing to know what is about to happen. This enhanced the movie, but it still needed more than just the excitement of a few scenes.

On a scale from 1-5, Kidnap is a one. I would not choose to watch this film again and recommend that you only see this movie if you are a fan of Halle Berry and her previous movies such as, The Call. This movie’s genre is labeled as “thriller.” However, I didn’t find it very thrilling or exciting. If you are looking for an adventurous movie that is original and captivating, Kidnap is not the way to go.

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