Film Review : A Hijacking (2013)

IMDB Score – 7.2
Rotten Tomato Score – 96%

Directed By – Tobias Lindholm
Starring – Pilou Asbæk, Søren Malling, Abdihakin Asgar

The crew of a Danish cargo ship is hijacked by Somali pirates who proceed to engage in escalating negotiations with authorities in Copenhagen.

People who watch a lot of movie notice a trend once or twice a year. It’s the trend of the doubles. Two movies, sometime three or four, come out around the same time that are about the same thing. We saw it with Armageddon and Deep Impact, Mission to Mars and Red Planet, and most recently White House Down and Olympus Has Fallen. Earlier this month I reviewed Captain Phillips and found it to be a completely good film throughout and as tense as they come. Captain Phillips, like A Hijacking are basically the same movie plot wise. They just so happen to be entirely different in every other way.

A Hijacking is not your typical action thriller. Hell, there really isn’t much action. A Hijacking is a slow burn as hostage movies come and really plays with the viewers head. Psychology when dealing with a hostage situation can get very interesting very quick and it actually took me a while to go from “why the hell won’t this problem get resolved quicker” to thinking “well, this is sort of making sense”. Piracy is not something that you can just pay to go away. You feed the monster and it only gets bigger and stronger. It takes a lot of effort not to scream at the screen urging the characters of this film to make different decisions and for that the film takes a hell of a lot more meaning than a standard action film that adheres to the guidelines.

A Hijacking was just as tense as Captain Phillips without having to shout it in my face with blaring Hanz Zimmer-esque scores and fast moving cameras. These were not particularly troublesome for Phillips but rather evidence on how different two nearly identical films can be. I enjoyed both for two different reason. If you like slow burns and completely realistic portrayals of how piracy negotiations work, then check out this film.


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