There are terrorist movies and then there are TERRORIST movies. Unthinkable, in my opinion, falls into the latter. We’ve all seen the films that have the Islamic-motivated individuals who have done something extreme to prove either a political or personal point at the expense of others. They are fearless, clever and more than willing to die for their country and beliefs. This thriller has all of this but it takes it to another level.
Steven Arthur Younger (Michael Sheen) or Yusuf Atta Mohammed, which he prefers to be referred as is an American man who has made the conversion to Islam. He has placed three bombs in three American cities, all set to explode on the same day at the same time. Yes, and all of them are of the nuclear nature. He purposely allows himself to be captured by the U.S. government and is then subjected to special forms of "interrogation" by a man called "H" (Samuel L. Jackson). H has been specially hired by the government for his unique skills to deal with these specific kinds of situations. In addition, an FBI Special Agent, Helen Brody (Carrie-Ann Moss) is requested by H to assist him in extracting the unknown locations of the nuclear
bombs from Younger.
Immediately upon meeting him, Younger is shown, or better yet feels, what exactly H does. To say the least, Brody is completely against H’s tactics and tries to convince him to stop. Yeah, like that was really going to happen. Throughout the film, many ideas and theories are thrown around by those conducting the investigation as to whether Younger’s threats are even legit. But the "Islamic-motivated" man assures them that he will not disclose any information until his demands are met. Demands that consist of Muslim countries being left alone and U.S. troops being withdrawn from Islamic areas. By stating these requests, he makes everyone aware that he not only wants justice for the horrors that have been done to his Muslim brothers and sisters but also peace and rest for his American people. The events that take place during the rest of the film, including some very unorthodox techniques of trying to get him to talk, makes for a whirlwind of a movie and definitely edge of your seat material.
The story was written by Oren Moverman and Peter Woodward is grossly engaging and I do mean grossly. Although some scenes are not for the faint of heart, director Gregor Jordan does a good job of not making it all about the gore. The interaction between the characters and back and forth of the plotline keeps the audience guessing without managing to lose any eyeballs watching the screen. It doesn’t take very long to get off the ground, delivering an open scene of Younger making his initial video demands. After that, it’s off to the races as we are introduced to Special Agent Brody and H as they are made aware of the possible consequences at hand.
Moss’ FBI character we can tell is somewhat of a light hard-ass, if that makes any sense. She is all about business and achieving results with very limited time for fun and games. But at the same time when compared to Jackson’s H, she is probably more human than we ever guessed. As with many of his roles, Samuel L. Jackson’s character is cool and extremely confident. He acknowledges what needs to be done and never hesitates at his tasks at hand. You like him but at other times you want to label him as a real a******.
I wanted to find something wrong with this movie. Only because I don’t normally hand out perfect scores but I couldn’t. Some may feel that it is simply a pile of processed and rehashed political/terrorism mumbo jumbo while trying to entertain its audience. But I feel that it dives very deep into the harsh reality of what is going on in the world today; bottom line is that there’s a war going on. We don’t know if it will ever stop but we do know that there are people out there who will go the ever seeing distance to make sure they feel retribution for evils done to them and their families. Sheen’s terrific performance as our antagonist provides Hollywood-style proof of this.
I’m sorry I slept on this direct-to-DVD gem so that’s why I’m suggesting it to well, everyone. I give Unthinkable "5 reasons why you can’t prosecute someone without fingernails out of 5".
“Every man, no matter how strong he is, lies to himself about something”