Viggo Mortensen putting in a pretty convincing performance as a Russian gangster in London.
Dude goes balls out, and I meant that entirely literally – if you’ve ever wanted to see Viggo’s skinny bare ass, or his dick & balls, this is the movie for you. (I hadn’t ever wanted to, but in context it wasn’t exploitative – it’s not a hot scene.)
I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a movie that was so graphically, realistically, disturbingly violent. Where other movies would cut away to a face shot, we instead see the bolt cutters grinding through flesh and bone, and cutting off fingers, or razor blades being forcefully sawed back and forth, cutting through a throat.
Punches are not pulled.
Even if it isn’t all good, it’s still an exceptional piece of film making.
Actors wanting to learn how to project a palpable air of menacing power, violence held in check but ready to go at a moments notice, without screaming and shouting and putting on scowling and gravelly voices, would do well to pay close attention to Mortensen’s work in this role.
There was at least one scene which seemed to have the entire theatre (which was full of Russians, for obvious reason) shocked to the point of holding our collective breaths. Followed by a long release, with the odd nervous laugh from various around the room. Truly intense.
It’s quite something, if you have a strong stomach, you should see it.