Director: Steven Shainberg
Writer: Brian Nelson
Stars: Noomi Rapace, Micheal Chilkis, Kerry Bishe
Primal fear is an emotion that can bring the strongest person to their knees and Rupture taps into this in a truly unique way. One of the few great equalizers, fear is a potentially debilitating emotion that everyone experiences, but what if you were able to fight through it and become a more advanced creature? Rupture poses this question by abducting single mom Renee Morgan (Noomi Rapace) and subjecting her to a series of tests in an eerie underground bunker.
Renee’s fear is spiders and this is immediately made obvious within the first sixty seconds of the film. If, like me, you suffer from arachnophobia then you too, will be put on edge immediately. This is a bit of a blessing and a curse because, ultimately, Rupture is more sci-fi than horror, but don’t let that turn you off. Writer Brian Nelson (Hard Candy, 30 Days of Night) has crafted a unique, thought provoking thriller that marries beautifully with Steven Shainberg’s (Secretary, Fur) direction. The gorgeous, yet ominous, jewel tones consistently remind you that Renee is in constant danger while the creative tracking and camera angles allow you to absorb her surroundings just as she does. Clearly a man who knows how to celebrate a strong female character, Shainberg has written a visual love letter to Rapace and she absolutely shines. The original Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Rapace is a delicate looking creature who is mentally, emotionally and physically stronger than a lot of men. And that is exactly what these underground scientists are hoping for.
Led by Terrence (Peter Stomare) and Dr. Nymar (Leslie Manville) with the assistance of Diane (Kerry Bishe) and a stone faced Michael Chiklis as the Bald Man, this group has been systematically abducting people for centuries and subjecting them to tests to find out if the subject will succumb to their fear or if they will rupture. As Renee begins to uncover the myriad mysteries and secrets happening in this unnamed research/torture facility, she must endure extreme fear based experiments. As stated previously, her fear is of spiders and damn if they don’t exploit this in a truly excruciating and terrifying fashion. Despite literally causing me to physically recoil and screech, the scene with a tarantula is exquisitely shot with an incredible amount of love dedicated to the sound which throws it over the top. If snakes or drowning are your fear, you shall be treated to some beautifully deranged scenes as well.
Traveling with Renee as she tries to fight her way to freedom and outsmart her captors, we are treated to a cinematic experience that allows us to feel as though we are with her every step of the way. Though the ending feels a tad abrupt and the movie may not be what you expect at all, it is always a treat to watch a truly strong woman navigate a world that wants nothing more than to break her down. Waiting to find out whether or not Renee succeeds or fails is time well spent.
Lisa Fremont | Twitter: @lcfremont