Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Debt (2010)

The title is intriguing. What kind of debt is it? Who own the debt?

It's about 3 Mossad agents: Rachel, Stephan, and David who went to Germany 30 years ago to kidnap a war criminal, Dieter Vogel, known as the Surgeon of Birkenau, who used Jews for his horrible experiments during WW2. Vogel hid/worked as a fertility doctor in East Germany using an alias and the 3 agents successfully kidnapped him, but the escape-from-East-Germany mission went wrong. They had to guard him until they have another opportunity to cross the border and bring him to Israel to face trial. In short, Vogel escaped his guards. The 3 agents couldn't tell the truth to their bosses and to make everybody happy, they made a story about how Rachel shot Vogel to death when he was trying to escape. They returned to Israel as heroes.

For 30 years they have lived with this lie. Then David died. Also at the same time, 1) Rachel's daughter published a book about their heroic deed and 2) a shocking news came from Russia. Someone had told a journalist that he was the Surgeon of Birkenau.

To pay the debt, Rachel goes to Russia (Stephan lives on a wheelchair, so he cannot do the task) to find this Surgeon of Birkenau to kill him, as she should have done 30 years ago. The ending has some surprises and this is an enjoyable film. Both Jessica Chastain and Helen Mirren who played Rachel were very good.

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