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Shadow Dancer

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October 16, 2012
7:00 am

London, The Tube. A packed train speeds through the underground. Among the half present gazes sits a lone woman, clutching an awkwardly sized bag. She exits the train, plants the bag and exits. As she takes her first steps into daylight, she is seized by two suited men and silently ushered into an unmarked car.

IRA bomber Colette McVeigh (Andrea Riseborough) has been caught by the British Secret Service. She now has choice, a life in prison or become an informant.

Centered in Belfast in the early 90’s, Shadow Dancer is the latest from director James Marsh, returning to film after his recent documentaries Man on Wire (2008) and Project Nim (2010).

You could describe his latest feature as a slow moving thriller, as it adds note after note into a deeply suspenseful chord. Riseborough plays Colette cool on the surface of deep running distress. She’s partnered by Mac (Clive Owen), the dashing MI5 agent who forms a complex relationship with Colette.

Making a splash at Sundance before premiering locally at MIFF earlier this year, Shadow Dancer is worthy viewing for any fan of political thrillers. Opens nationally October 11.


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