I was annoyed with this film from the start. The trailer made me think of Black Widow's origin story and every time I watched it thereafter all I could think was "Why didn't they sell this to Marvel Studios and give Scarlet her movie already??". Needless to say, I went into the theater with reservations, there was no way I could possibly like this.
While it has a running time of 2 hours and 20 minutes, the film kept things going at a decent pace. There really wasn't much action but like any good thriller, the audience was engaged with the story and spent the time in their seats wondering what would happen next, for the most part.
The film was raw, graphic, and uncomfortable at times. There were scenes of rape, torture, and humiliation so it's no wonder the reviews so far have been less than kind. No one likes seeing anything that gruesome outside of a slasher flick. No one wants to believe things like that happen to people in real life. Add the 2+ hour running time and people are going to leave cranky.
I can't speak for all audiences, but I figured out how the film was going to end within the first half hour, and that really annoyed me. I had hoped there would be another twist, something that came from nowhere. I was hoping to be shocked as scenes in the film were very shocking in themselves. But no, instead I was let down because, after all of the violence and gore, the film wrapped up in the most logical way. And while I wasn't upset with how it ended, I was disappointed that they made it so very predictable.
JLaw is buck naked in one scene which I'm sure bothered some of her fans considering all the hub-bub that came when her personal photos had been leaked in the tabloids. It surprised me too but, like any good actor, she made a choice she thought was best for her character and frankly, there was nothing sexy about that scene so if you're thinking about going just to see her; A: grow up and B: you'll be disappointed anyway...if you have a soul. Personally, I don't see a need to see every part of an actor in a film but I understand the motivation behind it. And to be fair, there was an equal amount of male nudity in it as well.
....and I still left thinking of Black Widow. It seriously could have been her origin story. It should have been her origin story. And sadly, now that she's getting her own film, I'm going to watch that thing and compare it to this. So I guess I'm just as disappointed as the other theater-goers though, my reasoning is entirely different. At the end of the day, I did enjoy the film but I know it certainly isn't for everyone.