Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Wildcat Review: A Conversational Capture Thriller

Georgina Campbell	...	Khadija Young Luke Benward	Luke Benward	...	Luke Ibrahim Renno	Ibrahim Renno	...	Jalal Mido Hamada	Mido Hamada	...	Abu Khalid Ali Olomi	Ali Olomi	...	Saif Maz Siam	Maz Siam	...	Hamza Rest of cast listed alphabetically: Faruk Amireh	Faruk Amireh	...	Amir Matt Blundell	Matt Blundell	...	Case Officer Janna Bossier	Janna Bossier	...	DI Receptionist Aaron Cavette	Aaron Cavette	...	Delta Force Operator Chido Nwokocha	Chido Nwokocha	...	Medic

Release date: April 23, 2021
Running time: 93 minutes
Written and Directed By: Jonathan W. Stokes
Starring: Georgina Campbell, Luke Benward, Ibrahim Renno, Mido Hamada, Ali Olomi

An ambitious reporter (Georgina Campbell) stationed in the Middle East is taken captive after a militant group ambushes her convoy. Convinced that the young woman is hiding her true identity, they’ll stop at nothing to extract information crucial to the success of their upcoming terrorist attack.  With time running out, she must find a way to survive and turn the tables on her assailants.

Produced by  Christopher Alender	...	producer (p.g.a.) Jensine Carr	...	line producer Scott G. Carr	...	executive producer Greg Gilreath	...	executive producer Narineh Hacopian	...	producer Adam Hendricks	...	executive producer Zac Locke	...	executive producer David A. Smith	...	executive producerMusic by  Nicholas Jacobson-Larson	Cinematography by  Adam Lee	Film Editing by  Matt Blundell
Wildcat has a brutal start that lets you know the stakes for the reporter and what she will be going through.  And that brutality is only the beginning of this ordeal.  Lead Georgina Campbell goes through hell in her captivity, being tortured, questioned, and holding not only her life, but the lives of others in her hand.  And Campbell is able to carry much of this film with her earnest, serious, and sometimes scared performance.  Her character goes through several mood swings and phases.  Campbell is a firecracker; as she gains more confidence, she really lets her personliaty out.  That is not to say the other performances are not good, but Campbell is definitely the stand out.  

Wildcat's story progresses through conversation rather than action.  Although there are brutal scenes and some plotting, the majority of the film develops with Campbell speaking to her captors and other captives.  It was much more conversational than I expected and had the film feel like more of a play.  It was a smart move for an indie to limit the budget; filming is mostly limited to a small room with a limited number of characters.  But these budget issues do crop up with some less than stellar effects.  The movie does a good job of making the most of what it has, but you can tell where the limitations were.  And during some of the scenes, especially the action sequences, the overall feel of the film just does not impress.

But the biggest issue with Wildcat is the story itself.  It weaves a good tale and will keep you on edge at times, but it develops very slowly and when the story is completely told, it seems to be more of a Hollywood dramatization rather than some sort of real situation.  The reveals are interesting but don't seem plausible when you take a step back and think it over.  And it was this lack of plausibility that had me scratching my head at the end of Wildcat and made it tough to really get excited during this film.  

Wildcat showcases Georgina Campbell's acting and a smart use of budget to bring this indie thriller to life. 

Rent it.

Directed by  Jonathan W. Stokes	Writing Credits (in alphabetical order)   Jonathan W. Stokes
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Wildcat will be released in theaters on April 23, 2021 and digitally and on demand on April 27, 2021. For showtimes, click here.

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