Retreat (2011)

Thriller
Thandie Newton, Cillian Murphy, Jamie Bell, Jimmy Yuill
Kate and Martin escape from personal tragedy to an Island Retreat. Cut off from the outside world, their attempts to recover are shattered when a Man is washed ashore, with news of airborne killer disease that is sweeping through Europe.
  • Samuel Goldwyn Films Company:
  • R Rated:
  • IMDB link IMDB:
  • 26 Apr 2012 Released:
  • 21 Feb 2012 DVD Release:
  • N/A Box office:

All subtitles:



Trailer:

Excellent Acting Elevates Flawed Story7/10
"Retreat" is a three-hander, starring Thandie Newton, Cillian Murphy and Jamie Bell (although there is one other character with a brief speaking part). Kate (Newton) and Martin (Murphy) have gone off to an island retreat to regroup after Kate miscarries; they return to a solitary cottage on a remote island where they had been happy years earlier, thinking it might help their relationship. But Kate is withdrawn and Martin doesn't know what to do, and the whole thing might not have been a very good idea after all. One day, they stumble upon Jack (Bell), an injured military man to whom they are quick to offer shelter. Unfortunately, the generator in the cottage has shorted out, and the CB radio seems not to be working, so when Jack tells them that a fast-moving and lethal air-borne infection has been sweeping the world and the only way to protect themselves from it is to barricade themselves inside the cottage, they have no way of knowing whether he's telling the truth or not. But Jack's decisive (and bullying) behaviour convinces at least Martin that something is going on, and although Kate initially resists and suggests that they just leave the cottage to the "crazy" man, she too is more or less bullied into submission. And it is true that something is going on, but whether they can figure it out in time to save themselves is an open question....

This is writer/director Carl Tibbetts' debut film. I expected it to be a very tense psychological thriller, and to some extent it is, but there are flaws that perhaps a more experienced scriptwriter and director could have smoothed out. Largest among these is the simple fact that if Martin had listened to Kate right after Jack shows up, they wouldn't have gotten into this mess. It's hard to swallow disbelief when some plot points are so, well, silly. This is not to pan the film at all – it's sharp, has some beautiful cinematography (it was filmed in Gwynedd, Wales), and a lot of the twists and turns (especially at the end) are unexpectedly rich. But really the best reason to see this film is for the acting; our three leads are just outstanding, with Thandie Newton's performance serving as the focus that holds the whole film together. Definitely recommended.
Surrender8/10
I'm not sure how much I can write with this film because writing much would be risking large spoilers.

Essentially, a couple with personal problems are alone at their private island home and before long, the unreliable generator breaks down, leaving the house without much power. Now, however, another man appears bringing news about the occurrence of an unknown virus sweeping across the continent. The house is sealed off. But before long the couple suspect this man of being the real threat. However without power, how will they discover the truth?

That's basically where the suspense comes from - not knowing what the stranger might do, or how this couple might respond to their situation or try to escape.

In the final act, many pieces of information are revealed, turning the audience's perspective on its head.
It is a good movie8/10
I don't understand the bad critics,it is a good movie. I watched it after I read the reviews here and was expecting something worse.I must say I was pleasantly surprised by Retreat. It is a psychological thriller,the acting is very good (Cillian Murphy is a remarkably good actor,but also Jamie Bell and Thandie Newton are a pleasure to watch)and the story kept me guessing until the end. Retreat slightly reminded me of 28 Days Later,but it is a totally different story and captivating in it's own way.I liked the pace and the atmosphere of the film,and I would recommend it to everyone interested in this genre. Retreat definitely deserves better critics and a better rating!
Very good virus movie8/10
An above average virus movie, very enjoyable. I am not sure why some people that appear to not enjoy horror or virus/plague movies insist on watching them then complain when they do not like it. That would be like me eating my least favorite food then complaining how the meal sucked. It makes no sense, this movie was great for those that enjoy this type of movie. The acting was good and it keeps you guessing to the very end.

Worth your time to watch. Good acting, very nice location and good plot.

Give it a shot, it is worth it.
Shocked that its IMDb rating is so low...9/10
As the title says, I am genuinely shocked that Retreat has an IMDb score of 5.7 (at the time of writing). Whilst not a terrible score, it is below the average of scores I usually see on IMDb.

Retreat was, admittedly, rather slow to get going. However I did not see this as a negative element of the film as it served to provide the back-story of the protagonists, a much needed element to discover why they were on the island in the first place. The chemistry between Cillian Murphy and Thandie Newton was good, and as always they both acted their parts excellently (Jamie Bell, also, played his role brilliantly, although he will always be Billy Elliot to me!)

The film itself is brilliantly written. The dialogue is believable, and there is just the right amount of confusion and suspense building up to the twist ending.

Speaking of the ending, I genuinely did not see it coming at all, and for me it just made the film that little bit better.

In summary, it's a brilliantly acted film, it's a new twist on the whole "pandemic" concept that has come about during the last few years, and I think it definitely deserves a watch. Do not let the mediocre IMDb score put you off!