Posts Tagged ‘eastern promises’

Movie Review: Eastern Promises

May 6, 2008

I have this rule about full-frontal male nudity: If a movie features it, I almost always end up liking the movie. Thus, I am a big fan of Ewan McGregor’s oeuvre with the unfortunate exception of the odious Velvet Goldmine (don’t get me started; still can’t make it past 40 minutes).

Though Eastern Promises boasts an extended naked fight scene in a Russian bathhouse, with Viggo Mortensen’s meat and two veg getting flung all willy-nilly and then some, it was not enough to counterbalance horrendously written dialogue (“If we give them accents, it doesn’t matter that the script sucks!”) and the miscasting of the truly awful Naomi Watts and her everpresent gap-toothed expression. The ridiculousness of Watts’ London midwife hopping on her kicky motorbike, complete with retro helmet and fighter ace goggles, around the 35-minute mark was enough to drive me into hysterics.

Long story short: A mysterious birth and death inexplicably make a midwife go all Miss Marple and investigate the Russian mob. Whatever. Even typing it makes me feel stupid. Each Russian character is more stereotypical than the last: All making beeg trahbull for moose and squirrel. With merciless amounts of borscht, vodka, and a heavy helping of radical implausibility, Eastern Promises gestates into a wheezing pathetic vision of newly gilded Iron Curtain nonsense.

Grade: D.