Eastern Promises Reviews
I'm Russian, so I get pretty critical and nitpicky when I see Russian characters in Hollywood movies. Usually I get mad or disappointed, usually the portrayals are disgraceful, the language is barely Russian at all, the people talking this mangled language barely try. Not to mention the typical Russian villains.
But here, WOW. I feel like this is the best Russian portrayal I've seen out of Hollywood. Any better than this and it'd be some kind of joint Russian production. You could tell the production did its research, most of the actors took their Russian lessons seriously, the Russian dialog made sense and was surprisingly natural. Hell, they even finally hired real Russians to play some of the extras.
And Viggo just... He just knocked it out the park and into another galaxy. I always heard he had a talent for languages, but to hear it here was a shock. He nailed the language. Bravo to him. I might even go as far as to say that this was Viggo's most impressive role yet.
I also have to say that I was really surprised by the quality of the cast here. They all did a serviceable job.
Now the story took me by surprise. The third act of the movie is refreshingly unexpected. I thought I had a good grip on it all, and then I was pleasantly proven wrong. It elevated the movie from a good movie, to a great one.
I can recommend this movie to anyone with a completely clear conscience.
'Eastern Promises' is a movie that would appear to have everything: good performances, excellent direction/cinematography, and a proved writer in Steven Knight. Yet, for whatever reason, it never quite lands as well as it should. There's nothing blatantly wrong with the movie, but there's nothing particularly noteworthy either. It's a well-made crime drama made by very talented people, all of which have done better, but could do a helluva lot worse too.
When where we end up we are stuck in, forced to live a dreadful life, when we searched long for this better life. We console in a diary to maintain our sanity and thoughts to get through it. The place we search for we realize we are searching in the wrong place before it's too late. There is no better life here, when gangsters and corruption rule the streets and you live in it and need it. When this better life isn't achievable when such corruption is too in depth and large and hidden that no one is able to solve or grasp. When these careless souls are even careless when those whom they rely on fail. When getting into deep in such departure corruption takes time and lives are at loss, but the sacrifice for those help resolve end corruption eventually until a new one happens again. A constant battle, struggle and fight that not only victims go through but those whom have to end it.
It takes some good hearted, soulful angels to help give a life for those whom cant.
The quick bursts of brutal violence punctuate long bits of character development, with Mortensen looming large over the film, exuding menace just by standing there with a half-smile playing about his lips.