The Debt (2011)

In the interests of completing my ever-growing backlog, I decided to post ‘drabble reviews’ of some films. For those unfamiliar with the concept, a drabble is a complete piece of writing exactly 100 words long.

2013 #37
John Madden | 109 mins | TV | 2.35:1 | USA, UK & Hungary / English, German & Russian | 15 / R

The DebtScreenwriting partnership Jane Goldman and Matthew Vaughn vacate their usual milieu (see Stardust, Kick-Ass, etc.) for this Israeli spy thriller remake.

In a dual-pronged narrative, a team of Mossad agents are hailed as heroes following a high-value mission, only to face serious repercussions decades later. A cast led by Oscar winner Helen Mirren and nominees Jessica Chastain and Tom Wilkinson help affirm this as serious-minded Cold War drama, miles away from the Bondian world Goldman & Vaughn will next enter for Mark Millar adaptation The Secret Service.

Perhaps a little stodgy in places, it’s nonetheless an engrossingly plausible espionage drama.

4 out of 5

The Debt is the latest in an ever-growing number of films where the internet can’t agree on its ‘year’: IMDb go with 2010, but sites like Wikipedia and Rotten Tomatoes go with 2011. On the old methodology of Google searches, “The Debt 2010 film” produces 107 million results, while “The Debt 2011 film” gives 146 million.

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