Written by / 2/03/2012 / No comments / , , , , , ,

EASTERN PROMISES

title: EASTERN PROMISES
year: 2007
cast: Viggo Mortensen, Naomi Watts, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Vincent Cassel
rating: ****

In David Cronenberg’s riveting mob exploitation, a dead young girl’s diary provides a posthumous narration while Naomi Watts, as the emergency room nurse who delivers her baby, seeks answers at a restaurant where the girl had worked – but there’s so much she doesn’t know: the owner is a dangerous Russian mobster who wants the diary since it provides information about his only son, a brash, unpredictable firebrand played with a sinister childlike edge by Vincent Cassel. His only friend is the family’s driver/hitman Viggo Mortensen as Nikolai – a Siberian thug  sent to recover the diary and who’d already “cleaned-up” the remains of a spontaneous hit that ignites the movie with the kind of (somewhat gratuitous) ultraviolence occurring throughout, reminiscent of the horror genre where Cronenberg made his ground. But as the director of a suspenseful mob film, and using only a few dark lit locations – each bathed in a stark, Noir inspired visage – he makes each moment seem as if anything can happen at any time. There are a good number of important twists that would be a crime to mention, but what really matters is the dark-edged, underplayed performance of Mortensen – who this reviewer’s been a fan of since his irascibly savage turn in 1991’s THE INDIAN RUNNER. Not since Sally Kirkland's ANNA has an American pulled off an East European accent so well, you don’t even think about it. Armin Mueller-Stahl, as the aged mob boss hiding his own secret, embodies the subtle pride of his Russian lineage with a lethally formidable countenance growing darker as Watts, wonderfully mixing a lithe vulnerability with a spirited strength, gets deeper into a world that she, and perhaps even Nikolai, doesn’t belong.
Share This Post :
Tags : , , , , , ,

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

All Time Popular

Featured Post

EDMOND O'BRIEN RACES THROUGH THE CLASSIC FILM NOIR 'D.O.A.'

Title: D.O.A. Year: 1959 Director: Rudolph Maté Stars: Edmond O'Brien Rating: **** For one of the most literally deadly-serious film noi...

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM
Movie Reviews, Interviews, Articles and Pop Culture from White Heat to Blue City

RIP ACTOR KEN HUTCHISON

TOTAL HITS

Popular Trending

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE
RANDOM QUOTE: "I love my country and I love my slippers." Jack Benny in Ernst Lubitsch's To Be Or Not To Be

FILM NOIR & NEO NOIR CRIME

FAVORITES SHORTLIST

1)OTLEY 2)HELL IS A CITY 3)ROBBERY 4)THE FEARMAKERS 5)CANYON PASSAGE 6)VIOLENT SATURDAY 7)HOT CARS 8)JUNGLE STREET 9)THE CROWDED SKY 10)THE ROARING TWENTIES 11) ANATOMY OF A MURDER 12)SHARKS' TREASURE 13)SWEENEY TWO 14)RAIDERS FROM BENEATH THE SEA 15)HARDCORE 16)THE SYSTEM 17)WHITE HEAT 18)AL CAPONE 19)HIDDEN FEAR 20)FALLEN ANGEL 21)NIGHT CREATURES 22)THE HEROIN BUSTERS 23)ASH WEDNESDAY 24)THE BREAK 25)AIR PATROL 26)THE STONE KILLER 27)EASY LIVING 28)WILLIAM CONRAD'S BRAINSTORM 29)FRENZY 30)THE MAN FROM LARAMIE 1)DANA ANDREWS 2)JAMES CAGNEY 3)STANLEY BAKER 4)MARLON BRANDO 5)CHARLES BRONSON1)VIRGINIA MAYO 2)SUE LYON 3)GENE TIERNEY 4)MERRY ANDERS 5)FAYE DUNAWAY DIRECTORS 1)JACQUES TOURNEUR 2)RICHARD FLEISCHER 3)STANLEY KUBRICK 4)ORSON WELLES 5)OTTO PREMINGER 6)JOHN LANDIS 7)JOHN GUILLERMAN 8)VAL GUEST 9)JOHN CARPENTER 10)MICHAEL WINNER

BRITISH NEW WAVE CINEMA

RARITIES AND EXPLOITATION

HAMMER HORROR & THRILLER

Popular This Month

CHARLES BRONSON CINEMA

CINEMA OF DANA ANDREWS

WESTERN GENRE REVIEWS

PEAKING INTO THE SIXTIES

KICKING IN THE EIGHTIES

TALES AND REFLECTIONS

REVVING THE SEVENTIES

FOR HORROR MOVIE REVIEWS

Most Popular Last Year

RETURN TO THE HOMEPAGE