Raw and brutal, Unthinkable is a thought-provoking psychological thriller exploring the boundaries of morality. It’s willing to go to some very dark but also very real places. And by the time it’s over, you’ll realize that almost the entirety of this movie could’ve already happened. And we wouldn’t have a clue about it. It sets a ferocious and intense pace right from the start. We will be following a team of interrogators as they’re trying to break a terrorist to reveal his evil plans. Unthinkable is also a definition of a ticking clock movie with the situation getting more and more desperate with each passing minute.
I understand why it was released straight to video but I think it would’ve smashed the box offices around the world. With that being said, I also think that some viewers might find Unthinkable rather difficult to watch. Considering just how brutal the events were, their portrayal is tasteful never once sliding into torture porn. Hell, I think that Lethal Weapon 2 has more intense torture scenes. The aspect I loved the most was the constant examination of our individual and institutional morality.
How far would you be willing to go to save your family? Now, how about your city and so forth? Shot nine years after 9/11 while it does feature a Muslim extremist terrorist it doesn’t dwell on that. It’s more interested in the character-driven drama and larger implications of the story. Traitor starring Don Cheadle offers much of the same storyline but explores the motivations and religious background of the terrorists in more detail.
Unthinkable is surprisingly entertaining and engaging exactly because of its familiar story with high stakes. Most similar movies focus on the action element with a lot of shootouts and explosions. One can think of Broken Arrow as a perfect example of this other approach. The performances were excellent all around, especially from our lead trio of experienced actors. Samuel, Carrie-Ann, and Michael made the movie feel more personal and more immersive.
Steven Arthur Younger is an American man who now goes by the name of Yusuf. We catch up to him as he’s filming a terrifying message for the government of the United States. He promises to wreak havoc unless his demands are met. FBI and the special black-ops military team will have to unwillingly join forces in order to stop this madman from fulfilling his promise.
Fast-paced and with a running time of just ninety minutes, the point of Unthinkable is to make you think. To make you think about what would you do in that type of situation. And then to examine the world we live in how it’s structured, what the governments are telling us and what are they doing. I mean, you don’t have to go further than Younger’s demands to realize that something is seriously wrong. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Finally, if you’re looking for movies like Unthinkable, I suggest you check out The Negotiator also starring Samuel L. Jackson and Under Suspicion.
Director: Gregor Jordan
Writer: Peter Woodward
Cast: Samuel L. Jackson, Carrie-Anne Moss, Michael Sheen, Stephen Root, Martin Donovan
Fun Facts: The original release of the movie did not include the ending that’s now a part of the standard version of the movie.