Anthony Mackie didn’t quite come out of nowhere, as he’s always been turning in solid work, but lately his career has just been soaring. Literally, in the case of his character, Falcon, in the upcoming Captain America: The Winter Soldier. But for his new flick, Repentance, he’s keeping things grounded. Really grounded. As in underground. Locked up in the basement of a psychotic Forest Whitaker who may just have seen Misery one too many times.
Years after a drunken car crash that almost took his life, Thomas Carter (Anthony Mackie) has reinvented himself as a therapist/spiritual advisor who advocates a synthesis of world religions and positivity. He’s parlayed this vocation into a successful book release that one day draws the attention of Angel Sanchez (Forest Whitaker), a profoundly troubled man fixated on the “untimely” death of his mother. When Carter takes on Sanchez as a personal client in an effort to raise funds for his indebted brother Ben (Mike Epps), things quickly take a turn for the worse. Angel needs much more than a simple life coach. What may be simple to grasp for some is the idea that single actions in the past comprise tidal waves of reactions in the present.
Repentance ( formerly Vipaka, as in the Buddhist term for the effects of karma) was written and directed by Philippe Caland, who penned Jennifer Lynch’s dark and sordid 1993 directorial debut, Boxing Helena, so he knows a thing or two about twisted people kidnapping and locking up others.
The film has already played the film fest circuit, and word on the street is that while it has a strong start, once Anthony Mackie gets tied down, so too does the film’s ambitions, and it becomes a very rote kidnapping thriller. Luckily though, it is apparently buoyed by a very game performance from the Oscar winning Whitaker.
Repentance will be hitting you on the back of the head and dragging you to go watch on February 28, 2014.
Last Updated: November 21, 2013