Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Review: In Bruges (2008)

The very moment I heard of In Bruges I wanted to see it. In my years of developing my own movie taste, I've always loved the British Gangster genre. Naturally, this seemed right up my alley.

When it came time to see it, I was surprised--in the best way. I figured it would be all crass humor and violence aplenty. I don't mind either of those things, and I got them, to a certain extent. The movie is really more of a drama with comedic elements. Incredibly dark and heavy, it deals with moral issues that caused me to have flashbacks of Cassandra's Dream...

Maybe this is because it was the second film in a week I saw Colin Farrell in. He played essentially the same role, except 10 times funnier. I honestly had no idea he was any good at acting. But by god, he is. Playing a hit man whose first assignment goes terribly wrong, he is sent to Bruges to await instructions from his boss. The trouble is, he hates Bruges. The only joy he finds is making fun of midgets and doing drugs and going to the pub. 

Aided by Brendan Gleeson, his fellow hit man and essentially his babysitter, it becomes an eloquent, poetic buddy film. 

The soundtrack is what threw me for a loop. It consists mostly of tranquil pianos and sweet solo violins. Along with the gorgeous cinematography of the Belgian town, you'd think you were looking at a classic drama--hardly the work of an amateur filmmaker.

The filmmaker in question--Irish Playwright Martin McDonagh--has made just one other film; an Academy Award winning short called "Six Shooter". His experience in the theater, though, helps him find a suitable and sensible voice for his characters. The writing is a strong point, but it's not for just theater lovers.

It's so refreshingly Un-PC. If you're easily offended by...Everything, don't see this. The film is beyond offensive, but it's great. I don't mind, so I loved it even more. At last, someone who just don't give a shit.

Overall, I would say it's a black comedic british gangster film with heart. Colin Farrell's boy-like conscience makes him such a unique character, and Brendan Gleeson's father-like presence helps their relationship and makes the whole experience sublimely enjoyable.

Ralph Fiennes co-stars (oh, and he's funny as hell).

Grade: A

No comments: