Madden crafts a throwback thriller, this one throwing the Mossad/Nazi Hunter genre on its head. Having two sets of cast play in the respective time periods, we follow as the stories of past glories are uncovered to be less than true, with deadly ramifications taking place.
There’s a fabulous cast in THE DEBT occupying both eras. Marton Csokas, Sam Worthington and Jessica Chastain deal with the earlier, more action-oriented set pieces. They provide the requisite intensity and serve the genre elements well. The older versions of these characters (Tom Wilkinson, Ciarán Hinds, and the inimitable Helen Mirren) get the less bombastic roles, illuminates the morally grey elements of the tale with a quieter intensity. Crosscutting between these ages, the structure of the film works effectively to craft a new take on this type of movie.
THE DEBT may not occupy any particularly new ground, but its clever structure, excellent cast and effective direction make for something more than just another genre piece. Clever and intense, the film’s well worth a viewing.