'Close' - Movie Review

Stars one of my favourite actresses, Noomi Rapace, as a "close protection officer" (aka "bodyguard"). This Netflix movie got relatively poor reviews for its conventional structure. I watched it for Rapace, but even she couldn't elevate this one.

Rapace is Sam Carlson. We first see her in South Sudan, where the journalists she's protecting come under attack. She proves how effective she is and gets both of them out alive. She's then hired to protect Zoe Tanner (Sophie NĂ©lisse), troubled daughter of a newly deceased mining magnate who doesn't get along well with her stepmother (Indira Varma) who runs the business. Sam and Zoe end up struggling to survive on the run in Morocco (the locations were at least interesting).

The movie get some points for realism: at one point, Sam takes a few minutes alone to have something approaching a nervous breakdown as she cries over the recent violent death of a good friend. Which made me think about the hundreds of action movies starring men, where the only reaction they have to the death of friends is righteous rage - never a tear. Real action heroes don't cry. Thank god there are women to show us what to do occasionally.

On the flip-side of that, we have the poorly thought out plot point about the stepmother, who initially throws her stepdaughter under the bus (figuratively) in pursuit of a business deal and conforms to every Disney stereotype of the evil stepmother. For the sake of a plot point she has a change of heart at a crucial moment (oops, sorry, spoiler). That was deeply unconvincing and they lost all points they gained for realism.