Posted on 10/21/05 12:37 PM
I wasn't sure what to expect from this movie. Would it be another drama that doesn't go anywhere by trying to be too deep or would be another cookie cutter good guy overcomes bad things uplifting thing. Being a Cronenberg film, I expected the former along with some weird stuff. Of course the only film I've ever watched of his in its entirey is Naked Lunch. Weird stuff that is.
Well, I was pleasantly surprised. The movie was gripping. It dealt with the issue of violence and whether one could escape from a past in an entertaining and thought provoking way.
I'm not going to go into the plot as that can be found elsewhere but the performances were excellent throughout. My girlfriend didn't like the acting by the daughter but her role is minor.
Viggo is the star with strong performances by Bello and Harris. I felt Hurt was a little over the top but other than that, excellent. I really enjoyed the son's character too. It was real but that moment where he acts on what every person who has ever been bullied wants to do was shocking but portrayed with realism.
The sexual scenes actually caused a stir at our screening but I think they enhanced the movie except the one scene of full nudity which I think added nothing other than shock value.
The violence in the movie was in many ways shocking as well but I think this was the theme of the movie, so I didn't consider it gratuitous (though the squeamish should be warned, classic Cronenberg).
I really liked the last scene. It wasn't contrived and felt real. All in all, a really good film. Makes you think but most important, keeps you entertained.