Make sure all the little Full House fans in your house are safely tucked into bed before you watch Captive — it features John Stamos (Full House‘s lovable Uncle Jesse) as a ratty-haired, remorseless thug. Stamos and another drifter played by Chad Lowe kidnap and hold hostage an Oregon couple (Barry Bostwick and Growing Pains‘ Joanna Kerns) and their baby; the slimeballs are wanted on previous burglary and kidnapping charges. Based on a true story, Captive has been turned into a tedious drama; you just know something bad is going to happen, for example, whenever an actor has to say the line, ”Life doesn’t get much better than this, does it?” as Bostwick does in the film’s opening moments.
As directed by Michael Tuchner (Adam), Captive is also an oddly unbalanced piece of storytelling — the kidnapping is resolved about two-thirds of the way through the film, as the rest of Captive turns into an all-too-quiet, psychobabbled exploration of the effect the ordeal has on the married couple. The acting is perfectly good, with Stamos a standout (so cold-blooded I’ll never look at Uncle Jesse in quite the same way), but as a drama, Captive is unnecessarily awkward. C-