Becky and Sandra aren’t the best of friends. Sandra is a middle-aged manager at a fast-food restaurant; Becky is a teenaged counter girl who really needs the job. One stressful day (too many customers and too little bacon), a police officer calls, accusing Becky of stealing money from a customer’s purse, which she vehemently denies. Sandra, overwhelmed by her managerial responsibilities, complies with the officer’s orders to detain Becky. This choice begins a nightmare that tragically blurs the lines between expedience and prudence, legality and reason.
There are two reasons that Craig Zobel could have decided to make Compliance, both equally wrongheaded:
1) Zobel simply wanted to expose this case (and, by extension, the others like it) to the world, without any sort of greater message. While I don't buy this as the filmmaker's motivation for a second, some people have argued such, so I'll address it...
Put simply: text-based reporting, as had already been done extensively in this case (meaning, no further examination was really needed for mere exposure), is generally, by design, far less exploitative than film. Compliance becomes completely exploitative as it descends into sexual humiliation, especially because Zobel selectively chooses what bad things to show the audience. For instance, Dreama Walker's bare…
After watching this and The Imposter recently, I have lost all faith in my fellow Americans and in humanity in general.
Compliance is based on a true story and you know how that goes, things are changed or added for dramatic effect most of the time in this type of film. It's the fact that any of this any of it at all actually happened that blows my fucking mind!
I recommend this film and I also recommend going into it blind. The less you know the more impact the insane amounts of stupidity will have on you. I guarantee by the end you'll find yourself saying what a bunch of fucking idiots or something to that effect.
Art is what we humans use to communicate with each other. It can be something as simple as an emotion, or as grand as a message. It's one of the most beautiful things about what makes humans so unique.
Then there are other films that simply act as time wasters. These usually include films of the summer blockbuster variety that simply mean to entertain you for the 2 hours you are there, and then walk out and forget about them. There's nothing wrong with those films, just that they're not really worth mentioning in the scheme of things.
But then there are films like Compliance. Films that want you to believe that they have plenty to offer. These films that…
In the 60s psychologist Stanley Milgram conducted an experiment to research how far man would go when faced with orders given by an authority figure (the experiment can be found here). The results were quite shocking. As it seems we, as a species, go very far when someone we think represents a moral or legal authority gives us orders we would normally not do. This film is about that.
I'll be honest, the second I finished this I went on the internet to find out if this was indeed a true story as the events it put on display were just unbelievable. To my amazement and dismay I discovered that it had all happened. Not once, but many times over…
I like the negative reviews that say things like "I'd be shocked to learn that the circumstances were as simplistic or deterministic as they are here." Guess what? They were! Viva humanity!
"I'll do... everything that you need."
'Compliance' will shock you, disturbed you, it will push your buttons. Yeah.. the film is not easy to watch, but, like a train wreck or a car crash, you want to know more, you want to dig deep into the madness.
The subject matter is difficult already, but director Craig Zobel, made it even more difficult and uncomfortable by holding the camera a beat longer in every shot, this made for a very unsettling feeling.
The fact that all this is based on real events, is the most disturbing thing for me. 'Compliance' is the example that reality is even more surprising and shocking than fiction, in any other film, the execution and the writing would be criticized as mediocre writing and full of plot holes , but, here is called.. a sad disgusting reality.
Compelling and well scripted. Only once or twice pushes the bounds of believability when two characters make a series of choices the motivation for which aren't quite conveyed by the performances.
This movie just became too ridiculous for me to like it in any way. As the story moves along, the people just become more and more obtuse in their reactions, and it seems so unlike human behavior. Not until the crusty, world-weary janitor-type comes along does anyone think anything is wrong with what is going on. At no point during any of this film does anyone say, "No, I'm not going to do that." It just became more and more preposterous as the plot moved on. The acting was average at best, and it didn't really feel as intrusive as I think the film hoped to be. Even the girl in question never truly resisted doing any of the things asked of her. Basic simple questions, which people would think to ask, were thrown to the wayside, simply to move the premise along. Shoddy all around, and seemingly without motive.
A staggering and honest display of human behaviour.
haunting and damning
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
If this film was not a true story, I would never have believed it.
It makes my head hurt thinking a collection of people can be this stupid. It's absolutely mind-boggling.
As for the film itself? It's pretty good.