The cast is the cream of the crop: Sam Worthington, Helen Mirren, Tom Wilkinson, Ciaran Hinds (Road to Perdition), Jessica Chastain as 1960s Mossad agents, and for the most part the acting was excellent.
Mirren fans are going to find this a departure from here usual less-violent casting, but the steely resolve we see in this movie harkens back to her days on Silent Witness.
Brilliant acting by Jesper Christensen, who plays the evil Dr. Vogel, is incredibly believable in this film based on the book Ha-Hov, meaning the debt in Hebrew.
The Mossad began at the birth of the State of Israel in 1949 as Central Institute for Coordination (CIC) which, in 1951, was replaced by Mossad under the supervision of Israel’s prime minister.
Mossad’s first high profile operation was the kidnapping of Adolf Eichman from Argentina.
They then hunted down the terrorists of the 1972 Munich Olympics.
Mossad ran amok of Canada when six Mossad agents mistakenly killed a Moroccan waiter—and used Canadian passports.
The Debt was billed as a thriller, which by definition is a movie that keeps the audience at the edge of their seats. As much as I loved the cast, this one didn’t provide the thrills—it was hard, edgy, bloody and brutally honest but I didn’t hit the edge of my seat once. The twist at the end makes you think, but the back and forth from the present to the 1960s takes some of the suspense away.
Big tip here: When you’re holding someone hostage, don’t let them talk. Not only is it annoying but it’s emotionally painful—just a thought.
There is a lot to like about The Debt if you’re a spy movie type of person, and if you dig a little deeper you might see a little of each of us in each of the characters as they try to live in today’s world, haunted by the past.
I really wanted to like this one, and there is something worthwhile about the show, but it’s not going to entertain you. It will leave you with no hero and a bunch of semi-villains who thought they were doing the right thing for their country at the time. And we all know that as time goes by, we may just have to rethink what seemed right at the time.
Best line: “The truth can be anything we want it to be.”
Susan Steen is a local non-profit executive and movie buff.