Traitor is a subdued little story about a Muslim soldier called Samir (Don Cheadle) who’s deep-deep-deep undercover as an explosives expert with a ruthless terrorist cell. When his government handler – the only one who knows he’s one of the good guys – is shot dead, Samir must avoid being clapped in chains by the FBI, prevent an appallingly grandiose nation-wide atrocity AND not blow his cover with the wingnuts.
So, it’s an almost-really-good film. I call it “subdued” in my opening, because with all that malarkey going on, it’s not a tense or thrilling ride in the style of, say, a Bourne movie. Having said that, it’s not without interest either – the insights into the workings of the terror cell itself are fascinating, chilling and considerably more thought-provoking than the usual. Traitor filmed in Toronto, Marseilles and Marrakech in Morocco, though none of the locations are particularly stand out. Ultimately the whole thing is held together by the excellent performances of Cheadle’s Samir, and Guy Pearce as the relentlessly dogged FBI agent – though there’s a schadenfreude-esque plot twist towards the end that is particularly satisfying. Worth a squizz.