|Raindance Film Review: Confine|
|Written by Ivan Radford|
|Saturday, 29 September 2012 12:14|
Director: Tobias Tobbell
There are two ways you can go with a low budget film. Either, you think out of the box to create something ambitious and inventive (How Do You Write a Joe Schermann Song? and Arashi Sado Tempest), or you go in the opposite direction: think inside the box so much that you create something claustrophobic. Confine, if you haven’t guessed from the title, does the latter.
Tobias Tobbell’s thriller begins with a shot of a locked door. Like former model Pippa (Daisy Lowe), who walks around her posh London apartment nervously checking the windows, we never see the other side.
Disfigured and lonely, Pippa hasn’t even stepped into the hallway for the last four years. She argues with her family on the phone, makes friends via Skype and obsessively stacks magazines in neat piles around the bedroom. That limited lifestyle is turned upside down when devious crook Kayleigh (Eliza Bennett) arrives – and the tension sets in.
The challenge with single-location shoots is to stop things feeling static. That’s never a problem for Tobbell. Taking a leaf out of David Fincher’s book, he weaves the camera smoothly through the corridors, keeping everything dynamic and full of suspense.
His cast are as good as his location: Daisy Lowe, in her first screen role, is convincing as the trapped model. She may have gone to the Tom Cruise in Vanilla Sky School of Disfigurement, but she sells her emotional torture with impressive conviction. Alfie Allen (off Game of Thrones) is solid as one of Kayleigh’s gang – it’s great to see Theon Greyjoy with a quiff and a cockney accent.
But while Daisy’s debut is bagging the newspaper headlines, it’s her rival that steals the show. A stonking, stunning villain, Eliza’s antagonist floats through the flat with carefree menace, comfortably cycling through wigs, outfits and personalities every few minutes. At one point she even speaks German – then morphs it into Spanish.
While Bennett’s on screen, Confine is captivating. You don’t know what she, or the story, will do next. It’s a disappointment, then, when the mildly predictable ending comes. Hints that are dropped early on are followed through to the letter – almost as if the script has been wrestled away from the unpredictable Kayleigh and back into more conventional hands.
Tobbell keeps to his rule, though, never leaving the apartment even as Pippa’s character develops in confidence. The result is an enjoyably claustrophobic thriller that makes for solid Saturday night viewing. It may not be Panic Room, but it’s still a darn sight better than many big budget thrillers out there.