19 June 2015 | quincytheodore
Arduously slow, depressingly dark and frankly might be too tortuous to watch
You can't fault Hope Lost for not delivering the title. This is not an action or investigation movie, both elements are present here but in very minute scale. Hope Lost is a depiction of human trafficking and sex slavery down to its gritty nature. While I don't object the dark tone in the genre and the film does have a couple of refined moments, for the most parts it's a string of cruel acts towards frail ladies and this is definitely not for everyone.
Sofia (Francesca Agostini) is a young woman who is promised fame and job by a stranger, as one might expect this is a bait to lure her into forced prostitution. Almost the entire movie is her struggle, meeting with violent mogul, dubious clients and another of the same fate. For what it's worth Francesca Agostini has performed admirably. Her portrayal of damsel in distress and overall material make it very easy to sympathize with her ordeal.
The rest of cast is mainstay of action movie such as Michael Madsen and Danny Trejo. It's admittedly awkward seeing them in such heavy theme, for those expecting over-the-top gunslinging action, there's little to none here. Pacing is rather slow, with large portion of the film spent of twisted deeds. It's not much of detective work either, it may look like noir flick but it provides no in-depth thriller aspect. The film simply portrays the heinous nature of the crime, abundantly so.
With tons of malicious scenes, it's really hard to digest. A few of these are realistically authentic, resembling the works of documentary channel, yet it often strays to pointless violence with repetitive torture. It may want to deliver a strong message, although it's hard to see the film be accessible to casual viewer or even fans of action or crime genre.
The good acting and sense of realism might earn merit, but with such horrendous displays of cruelty, Hope Lost is clearly not for casual consumption.