Thursday, July 02, 2009

Some Reviews of Movies Concerning Russia or Russians

Eastern Promises -- Viggo Mortensen plays a mysterious thug working with a white-slave type ring of Russian gangsters in London and getting involved with a hot blonde English doctor and the abandoned child of one of the prostitutes.

This is a cool movie, and Viggo gets the inscrutible bad-ass Putin imitation down pretty well. And they obviously had advisors about the tattoos and the "Vor V Zakone" old school gangster stuff. Also loved the fight scene in the banya -- that's just the shitty kind of thing Russians would do, jumping you when you're relaxing naked.



They blew a couple of small things however -- a guy like the one Mortensen is playing probably would wear a cropped or shaved head rather than the slicked-back pompodour; and I've been told that those old school gangsters in fact had a rule about never wearing ties. And there's a scene where a guy is drinking vodka out of the bottle, without a shotglass or pickles. Wouldn't happen.

All the white-slave prostitute stuff sounded about right. (Lured with promises, rather than just stuffed in a box, as too many movies would have you believe.)


BIRTHDAY GIRL -- Guy sends off for a Russian mail-order bride and ends up involved in a bank robbery scheme when the girl's Russian "cousins" come to town. This was better than I thought it would be, and Nicole Kidman really nailed the pale, anemic, dead-eyed tawdry sexiness of a Russian girl pretty well. Vincent Cassel is also suitably overbearing, unctuous, violent and threatening as a Russian hood.


A few questions come to mind about how she -- and her cousins -- managed to get visas to go to England so easily, however. Normally he'd have to go see her in Mosocow or wherever.

As for the "happy" ending -- well, without spoiling much, let's just say his troubles might just be beginning, hooked up with a chick like this.

HITMAN -- Video game chraracter Agent 47, gets mixed up in plot to assassinate the "moderate" Russian president and a conspiracy that, coincidentally, involves a Russian hooker. (I'm glad these movies are being accurate about the profession of every single Russian woman on the planet.) The hooker is played by Olga Kurylenko, who is in fact Ukrainian, however, and invests the prostitute with far too much humanity to be an accurate portrayal. She looks pretty awesome naked, though, I must say.

I liked the way the President of Russia's brother was a drug-dealing long-haired slave-trader, although he and his henchmen seemed too Eurotrashy and long-haired to be good Russian thugs. (Not a track-suit in sight.) The KGB -- oh, sorry, I mean FSB -- agent was the usual guy doing a German imitation, however.

Of course, if you wanted to train a bunch of ghost-like inconspicuous international assassins, why you would shave their heads and tattoo a barcode on the back of it is beyond me. . . and why a barcode, anyway? Did they have to scan their heads occasionally to ascertain prices or something? Well, what can you expect from a secret organization that just calls itself "The Organization" . . .

9 comments:

Burden said...

When do you leave Russia?

English Teacher X said...

probably August

Burden said...

Do I detect a retisence? I recently had my first encounter with a Russian girl (in Turkey) and found your words to be true ... cold, money-grabbing little vixens - but they do have nice bodies.

C'est la vie.

English Teacher X said...

there's still a police report document to get finalized; and I'd like to finish the summer out here, it's the best time. But then. . .

Burden said...

I hear summer in Saudi is pretty cool. The real slutty girls have an extra centimetre slit in their burkas, and the super-sluts even show off their ankles.

stevie austin said...

hahaha

Matt said...

I recommend Transsiberian with Woody Harrelson. It's about an American couple taking a train trip through Russia who unwittingly get involved in some shady Russian goings-on. It's very authentic and even has a track-suited thug.

English Teacher X said...

yeah, I liked that pretty well . . .

Kim Cochrane said...

12 is also a good movie ... especially after spending time in Russia.

P.S. thoroughly enjoying the bit of your blog I've read