Robert Lantos

Robert Lantos

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Eastern Promises Review


Excellent
We're in London and the streets look like they are owned and operated by Beelzebub himself. The ghosts of the KGB death squads loom in the distance, but the Russian crime syndicate's stranglehold over the hoods and alleys is as strong as ever. Out of one of these decrepit alleyways crawls a 14-year-old girl who walks into a pharmacy only moments before hemorrhaging from the baby girl inside her. Her death is announced at the same time as her daughter's birth. Welcome to the decaying London of David Cronenberg's Eastern Promises.

A master at the ancient art of phantom punching, Cronenberg's examination of the Russian mafia's sex trade, currently flourishing in London, doesn't hit you till you're a good quarter mile out of the theater, as you're still contemplating Viggo Mortensen's slicked-back hairdo. Like a cccwolf right before the hunt, Mortensen snarls and calmly stalks as Nikolai, the driver for a sect of the elusive crime syndicate Vory V Zakone, a specter that arose from the ashes of Stalin's work camps. Nikolai works for Semyon (Armin Mueller-Stahl) and Semyon's volatile son Kirill (Vincent Cassel), taking care of their transportation and their criminal refuse. When Nikolai snaps off the fingers of a corpse, he asks Kirill and his business associate Azim (Mina E. Mina) to leave... but the audience is allowed to stay.

Continue reading: Eastern Promises Review

Where The Truth Lies Review


OK
Where the Truth Lies casts such a uniquely seductive spell that it takes a good long while before you figure out that it's not, for the most part, very good. The film is a mystery, of sorts, but one in which you grow gradually more suspicious of the filmmakers, rather than any of the characters.

Adapting a novel by Rupert Holmes, writer-director Atom Egoyan (Ararat) guides the story of a reporter in the '70s digging for dirt on a defunct '50s comedy team Lanny and Vince (Kevin Bacon and Colin Firth, respectively). In doing so, he has created a fusion of noir mystery and showbiz tell-all, which explains why it's interesting even when it's not making much sense, and also why all of the women in both of the movie's eras look like femmes fatale.

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Robert Lantos

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Robert Lantos Movies

Eastern Promises Movie Review

Eastern Promises Movie Review

We're in London and the streets look like they are owned and operated by Beelzebub...

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