Cert 15 Stars 3

Simon Pegg and Lily Collins star in this enjoyably preposterous US thriller which sees Collins play Lauren, a principled New York attorney who’s horrified to discover a prisoner in an underground bunker on her family’s estate.

Played with a wounded, grubby and gleeful menace by Pegg, the captive seems to know all about Lauren’s recently deceased father and offers to trade the truth for a juicy steak, some chocolate and a cigarette.

Lauren can’t call the police as a scandal would ruin her highflying career and that of her smoothly amoral congressman brother who’s running for re-election.

The pair’s exchanges deliberately echo scenes in 1991 cannibal horror Silence of the Lambs, and though the pair are decent neither are a patch on the Oscar winning stars of that classic. Anthony Hopkins in particular would have Pegg for breakfast.

Mind you as he whispers and growls in an American accent, Pegg’s presence lifts the quality of the film which suffers a noticeable dip in energy and interest whenever he’s absent. I haven’t enjoyed a performance of Pegg’s this much for years.