FBI agents Jess (Roberts) and Ray (Ejiofor) along with Claire (Kidman), who works in the District Attorney's department, work in close sync with each other. However, they're horrified to find Jess' daughter dead one day, with her body being left in a garbage bin. Neither Ray nor Jess will rest until the murderer is brought to justice, no matter how long it takes.
Billy Ray's remake of Argentine director Juan Jose Campanella's 2009 film stays pretty faithful to the original in terms of some of the basic themes of the movie, such as obsession, bits of paranoia and revenge. But this time around, the action takes place in Los Angeles. Set in contemporary times, while Campanella's flick was set in the 1970s. Additionally, Ray's version has a war on terror backdrop which adds to the film's sense of dramatic tension.
Ray cannot bring himself to forget the gruesome rape and murder, even if 13 years has passed since he discovered Jess' daughter's body. And of course, Jess is completely shattered, becomes numbed with sorrow and anger as a result, and wants her own brand of revenge. Claire, apart from being the most cool-headed of the trio, is also Ray's love interest and this comes across fairly early on in the film. This romance angle adds a bit of warmth to a movie that is otherwise, quite dark. Over time, Ray seems to forget what his actual day job is, and hunting down the murderer becomes his single-minded obsession. The story is told with generous use of flashbacks, which makes it essential to watch this film with a fair degree of concentration.
As far as performances go, Roberts and Kidman are definitely on point. Though it is Roberts who manages to put in quite a compelling and emotion-laden show. Her portrayal of a mother, who has lost everything in life and yet has to be strong, is praiseworthy. Ejiofor manages to inhabit his rather complex character pretty well too. Their performances are buoyed by a good script. All in all, a fairly gripping tale.