The Clearing DVD


Robert Redford and Helen Mirren play a married couple whose lives are turned upside down when one of them is kidnapped for a ransom.

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21 February 2005
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment 
91 minutes 
  • Average Rating for The Clearing - 2 out of 5

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  • The Clearing
    Michael King

    At the beginning of this film Wayne(Robert Redford) and Eileen Hayes(Helen Mirren) seem to have the perfect marriage and an idyllic lifestyle. Then one morning on his way to work Wayne is abducted by Arnold Mack(Willem Dafoe) a work colleague from years back that he barely remembers. Tension buils as the kidnapper informs his victim of the men paying for his kidnap and safe delivery into their hands. Meanwhile Eileen liasing with the FBI reveals cracks in the marriage. The first rate cast give the type of performances you would expect of such heavyweight names. Unfortunately the film is let down somewhat by an ending that is too clearly signposted and which arrives too suddenly.

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Please note this is a region 2 DVD and will require a region 2 (Europe) or region Free DVD Player in order to play In its chilling opener THE CLEARING paints a classic portrait of rich man vs poor man showing the morning routines of two very similar characters Though they are both white middle-aged and of middle-class stature the nuances that differentiate them--their houses their wives their clothing--jump off the screen with stark clarity With a slightly jumbled chronology the subsequent events come not with shock but with devastating realness Wayne Hayes (Robert Redford) is in his Lexus on his way to work when Arnold Mack (Willem Dafoe) kidnaps him It all happens calmly with purposeful execution Mack wants money and will use Hayes as ransom to get it The film then turns to Hayes&39; elegant wife (Helen Mirren who is a tour-de-force in this quietly emotive role) and well-bred family who are saddled with a ransom negotiator and FBI surveillance and are forced to face the tragedy With no outright violence no sudden bursts of surprise and no wasted time THE CLEARING is a captivating masterful suspense thriller Debut director Pieter Jan Brugge works from a screenplay by Justin Haythe in telling this deeply unsettling tale Hayes and Mack (the superb and intense pairing of Redford and Dafoe) argue their opposite points of view through conversations about family morality and power Meanwhile safe at home Hayes&39; wife undergoes ups and downs reevaluating her marriage and her love for her husband as investigators dig through the intricacies and secrets of their lives Age Rating 12

Crime thriller starring Robert Redford and Helen Mirren. Wayne Hayes (Redford) is a well-off business executive with his own personal slice of the American dream: a beautiful wife, Eileen (Mirren), two grown-up children (Alessandro Nivola and Melissa Sagemiller), a lovely home in Pittsburg and a successful business built up from scratch. The Hayes' perfect world is turned upside down when Wayne is kidnapped by one of his employees, Arnold Mack (Willem Dafoe), and held ransom in remote woodlands. Eileen must deal with a houseful of FBI agents, led by Agent Ray Fuller (Matt Craven), and Wayne must draw on his powers of negotiation as never before. The film premiered at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival.

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