Our film critic explains why she refuses to cover ''Captivity'' and other ''torture-porn horror'' flicks

By Lisa Schwarzbaum
Updated July 26, 2007 at 04:00 AM EDT

Why our film critic hates ”Captivity”

This week, my colleague Owen Gleiberman describes the majority of Captivity as being ”not sick enough to disturb anyone who’d go to see this film.” For the sake of readers who appreciate guidance in the nuances of the genre referred to as ”torture-porn horror,” I’m glad Owen took the assignment. I wouldn’t.

It’s quite simple: I hate these movies. I won’t see these movies. Never saw Saw or its sequels, never will. I’m not impressed with the ”quality” of the gore or the ”wit” of the filmmaking. I’m not enjoyably scared; I’m horrified, and not in the way horror fans get off on, groaning and screaming with pack-mentality excitement. Instead, my horror is one of disturbance and anger: Who makes this vile crap? What is remotely defensible about a movie like Captivity, in which a woman is abducted and tortured for the sake of ticket sales? Nothing, that’s what. While moviegoers can vote with withheld wallets, I vote with my computer keyboard. Or rather, the silence of the keys, as I stay away from stuff I have no stomach for seeing, even on the job.