The gimmick of this energetic Brit-com is that the action
switches, approximately halfway through, from comic crime drama to comic
splatter movie. The main problem, then, is that The Cottage, against the odds, makes a better caper movie than gore flick. The first half-hour or so is an
engaging and amusing farce about kidnappers David (Andy Serkis) and Peter
(Reece Shearsmith), who drive to a secluded house with their hostage, Tracey
(Jennifer Ellison) bound and gagged in the trunk. It’s not the best plan — the outrageously busty Tracey may be the daughter of a gangster, but she’s a terrible hostage, strong-willed and foul-mouthed. She knows David on sight. And their inside man, Tracey’s brother Andrew, is a dimwit who brings the whole scheme tumbling down on top of them. About the time the car pulls up outside with a couple of Chinese hit men out for blood, The Cottage has established itself as a credibly tense comedy.