Tom Hanks, Jude Law, Daniel Craig, Jennifer Jason Lee, Stanley Tucci, Tyler
Hoechlin and Paul Newman
Director: Sam Mendes
Running Time: 117 mins
buy on DVD 17th March
(Hanks) is a family man who works for local entrepreneur, John Rooney (Newman).
Putting food on the table for his wife (Jason Lee) and two sons, they never
ask what he actually does for Mr Rooney. One fateful night curiosity gets
the better of his eldest son, Michael Jr (Hoechlin) and he stows away in
the back of the family car. As the inquisitive young boy watches his Father
and Connor Rooney (Craig) talk to their associate, he witnesses an event
that will change his life forever, the killing of three men at Connor's
and his Father's hands.
After winning the
Best Director Oscar for his debut movie American Beauty, everyone wondered
what Sam Mendes would do next. The answer was an unexpected one, as he opted
to bring a Gangster themed graphic novel by Max Allan Collins and Richard
Piers Rayner to the big screen. Set in 1931, the time of prohibition and
gangsters running the US, Mendes brings us a story of honour, lost, betrayal
and revenge but at its heart it is about the relationship between fathers
Casting Tom Hanks
as a hit man was a very surprising choice but one that has played off in
spades. Hanks gives another Oscar worthy performance by convincing you to
route for a man that has probably killed hundreds of people all because
of the faint hope of redemption for saving the life of his son, played by
the exceptionally good Tyler Hoechlin. How do you keep finding these tremendously
gifted child actors?
Jude Law is particularly
creepy as Maguire, a hit man that photographs his victims and sells the
pictures to the local press. He really embraces the character, with his
awful teeth and skulking manor repulsing you every time he graces the screen,
he is the consummate evil henchman.
Support is also
good from Daniel Craig as Connor Rooney, the power hungry son who sees Michael
as on obstacle to gaining his father's respect and Stanley Tucci as the
real-life right hand man of Al Capone, Frank Nitti.
Igniting the screen
every time he graces it, Paul Newman gives one of the most memorable performances
of his illustrious career. He actually said a while back that he would return
to the screen one more time if he could find the right role. If this is
the last time we see him on the silver screen then this is a magnificent
Road to Perdition
is one of the most visually stunning movies you will ever see. Sam Mendes
and cinematographer Conrad L. Hall bring the 1930s to life by authentically
recreating the look and feel of the period and bathing it in light and shadow.
There are scenes that are so visually stunning that you will watch slightly
ajar throughout. In fact the overall look is so exceptional that any individual
frame could be a picture on your wall.
stunning visuals is Thomas Newman's wonderful score. It does lapse into
the American Beauty sound on the odd occasion but this takes nothing away
for how Newman captures the time the movie and the feeling of key scenes,
whether they be dramatic or light-hearted.
Has Sam Mendes produced
the consummate gangster flick, probably not as the story is a tad predictable
but this won't distract you from being totally drawn in to what is happening.
He has however bought us one of the best movies of 2002 and certainly one
of the most visually stunning pieces of cinema I have ever seen.
from director Sam Mendes, 11 deleted scenes 'The Making Of Road To Perdition':
HBO Special ,Photo gallery, Cast and filmmaker biographies, Production notes,
Interactive menu and Scene access
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