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This movie is one of numerous recent Hollywood films made in support of American efforts to track down and thwart terrorist bad guys before they take more innocent lives.

Just kidding! Hollywood hasn't done that sort of thing for decades! Instead, this is one of those movies where the CIA sneaks people off on flimsy evidence to unnamed North African countries to have them interrogated and tortured by the locals, and local CIA agents look on.

In this case, it's an engineer named Anwar; he has a green card, a passport, and an American wife played by Reese Witherspoon. He's on his way home from South Africa, but phone records say that a terrorist's phone has placed a call to his at some point. So CIA bigwig Meryl Streep coldly approves the "rendition" of the title, and Anwar's off for some very rough treatment at the hands of a Telly Savalas lookalike.

Rendition was a major dud at the box office, like most of the movies that attempt to portray American post-9/11 policies as a mixture of bumbling, cravenness, and evil. But I thought I should check at least one of those out and see if it was as bad as all that. It was.

Last Modified 2024-02-01 5:22 AM EDT