A Sneak Peek at 'Alice Creed'

Membership has its benefits for Fantastic Fest fans

A Sneak Peek at 'Alice Creed'

When you drive an unmarked white van and your day’s errands include picking up tarps, drills, shackles, a headboard, rope, disinfectant, and a ball-gagged Bond girl, there aren’t a lot of ways your week will end well. Last night Fantastic Fest’s Facebook fans watched wannabe criminal masterminds, Danny and Vic, learn this the hard way.

You didn’t need a Fantastic Fest badge to get into last night’s free advance screening of The Disappearance of Alice Creed, which premiered at last year’s Toronto Film Festival and opens stateside in early August. (You just had to RSVP on the Drafthouse’s Facebook events page.) So I was surprised at the number of empty seats to writer/director J Blakeson’s British suspense thriller, in which two ex-cons, Danny (Martin Compston) and Vic (Eddie Marsan), kidnap and hold for ransom Alice Creed, the estranged daughter of a wealthy family, who is played by Gemma Arterton of Quantum of Solace and Prince of Persia.

The dialogue-driven plot employs a couple cups of stage blood, a handful of gunshots, and one pre-dug grave, but it by no means broaches festival standards for creative death design and innovative uses for prosthetics and Karo syrup. The teaser trailer is below – if you haven’t seen the full trailer yet, don’t. Wait for the film’s release next month. It’s the wildly unexpected but oddly believable plot twists that make the film.

The screening was over-booked online, and everyone seemed to have really liked it. Maybe it was the poor weather that kept the rest of the nerds home last night. (Or maybe they were still jet-lagged from their trip to San Diego?) Either way, I would not assume a comparable turnout for tomorrow’s sneak preview. For those of you making the pilgrimage: Get there early.

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Fantastic Fest, Fantastic Fest 2010, The Disappearance of Alice Creed, Gemma Arterton, J Blakeson

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