Saturday, February 9, 2008

In Bruges Review - SendMeRSS

InbrugesThanks for checking out our In Bruges review!

The General Idea

Plot synopsis from IMDB: Bruges, the most well-preserved medieval city in the whole of Belgium, is a welcoming destination for travellers from all over the world. But for hit men Ray and Ken, it could be their final destination; a difficult job has resulted in the pair being ordered right before Christmas by their London boss Harry to go and cool their heels in the storybook Flemish city for a couple of weeks. Very much out of place amidst the gothic architecture, canals, and cobbled streets, the two hit men fill their days living the lives of tourists. Ray, still haunted by the bloodshed in London, hates the place, while Ken, even as he keeps a fatherly eye on Ray’s often profanely funny exploits, finds his mind and soul being expanded by the beauty and serenity of the city. But the longer they stay waiting for Harry’s call, the more surreal their experience becomes, as they find themselves in weird encounters with locals, tourists, violent medieval art, a dwarf American actor shooting a European art film, Dutch prostitutes, and a potential romance for Ray in the form of Chloë, who may have some dark secrets of her own. And when the call from Harry does finally come, Ken and Ray’s vacation becomes a life-and-death struggle of darkly comic proportions and surprisingly emotional consequences.

The Good

This is an extremely well written story. Amazing call backs, fantastic tie ins, and an ending that … I would love to discuss, but cannot without giving something away. This is a dialogue heavy film that pits different characters together at different times. In a short amount of time we have in jokes, back stabbing, double crossing, good natured ribbing, enemies becoming friends, friends becoming enemies all the while remaining wildly entertaining. The characters in this film are all interesting, unique and it is a pleasure to see how them mix it up in varying combinations.

The film focuses mainly of the characters Ray (Colin Farrell), Ken (Brendan Gleeson) and “the boss” Harry (Ralph Fiennes). For most of the film we are following Ray and Ken around town, listening in on their discussion. This would normally be insanely boring fare, but Bruges is as beautiful a setting as you could hope for, and the 3 aforementioned heavy weights use language like they had a black belt in it. With words like whips they lash each other back and forth without skipping a beat, it was an absolute pleasure to watch these thespian masters speak with power, emotion and legendary timing.

We witness the “wind down” time of surly assassins and get to share in their post-murder day to day . Usually a film about assassins is all about “the job”; this film picks up where most finish. This was a dark drama, and the comedic moments were an equal shade of space. The theatre was packed and people were laughing throughout the film; well and often. So many of the conversations were packed with jokes, this is common in life, but is rarely done so well in a film. The chat was natural, funny and jam packed with profanity. You swear at work, I swear at work, these gents simply follow suit. The language is irreverent, crass and exactly what you should expect from people that kill others for a living.

The Bad

At 107 minutes I feel this film could have done with a slight trimming. The dialogue never got boring and in fact the film itself didn’t seem to drag, but a more liberal use of the editing shank may have made this just that much more. This however is my only quibble with this however. I have more problems with Mother Theresa than I do with this film.


I loved this film and could not recommend it enough, if you see one film this weekend - may this be it. I had high hopes for this movie and it did not disappoint in the least, it tickled me in the blackest regions of my heart; and for that, I thank them. Out of 10 I would gladly give this film a 9, and declare it Routh.

Link - Comments - (John Campea) - Sat, 09 Feb 2008 00:16:54 GMT - Feed (2 subs)
User comment: By: Travis
This movie was amazing. Colin Farrell's best best role in years, if not the best of his career. I can't wait til this gets a wide release so I can see it again and again.
User comment: By: Ben
I was hoping this movie would rock, a little bit propaganda for our little country Belgium! I'm looking forward to this movie. I saw the trailer and it looks nice. Thanks for the review Doug, I'm deffinetly going to see this movie.(When it eventually plays in Belgium.) Cheerz
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