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Eastern Promises [Blu-ray]

3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 21.54 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Eastern Promises [Blu-ray] + A History of Violence [Blu-ray] (Bilingual) + No Country for Old Men [Blu-ray]
Price For All Three: CDN$ 55.51

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Most helpful customer reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Trans-Siberian Affair Dec 10 2007
By Amanda Richards HALL OF FAME TOP 1000 REVIEWER
I'm actually not sure how to describe this movie, but I'll give it my best shot. First of all, Viggo Mortensen is outstanding as Nikolai, a driver and enforcer for the Russian Mafia, and full time baby-sitter to Kirill, the wayward son of Mafia boss Semyon. He's one cold, emotionless dude when he has to be, but has a human side that peeps out ever so often from behind that steely, chiseled mug.

Vincent Cassel (Kirill) and Armin Mueller-Stahl (Semyon) are also extremely convincing, the former as a violent drunk and the latter as the charming and affable, but very cruel father. Naomi Watts doesn't light up the screen and steal the show as she normally does, but it could be the depressing role of Anna, a midwife who delivers a baby for a fourteen year old girl who doesn't make it off the operating table.

Anne Frank may have left a more famous diary, but the diary of the unfortunate young woman is so revealing that some people are prepared to kill to keep the contents from being brought to light.

Fascinating in some aspects, such as the story behind the tattoos, and graphic in quite a few others, including a memorable scene with a totally nude Viggo battling against guys with linoleum knives, I found some parts a bit too long and drawn out, and some too predictable.

Never-the-less, the acting, the casting and the intensity of this drama make it extremely watchable (if you like this movie genre), and although it isn't going to be one of my favorite movies, it certainly is worth mentioning here.

Amanda Richards
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After watching Cronenberg trip himself up with comic book banalities in A History Of Violence, I didn't hold out much hope for Eastern Promises, which on paper reads with the same broad strokes: a downy naif has unquestioningly absorbed the presumptions of liberal democracy, and thinks she can change the world by standing alone and speaking the truth to power. Running parallel to her story is that of a ronin-type figure who has insinuated himself inside the corridors of power, and realizes there is no justice without embracing the methods and mindset of the enemy you hate. Thankfully, Cronenberg doesn't take the "Chatty Cathy" approach to character development -- we get to see ALL the principle characters slowly unfold through actions that eventually make enough sense to inform while keeping the narrative tight. This time Cronenberg isn't reinventing the wheel (The Fly) or attempting the impossible (Naked Lunch), he's delivering the goods -- including one of the most harrowing, physically persuasive fight scenes I've seen in years. Eastern Promises is a taut, focused thriller that left me, well, thrilled.

Post-script: while watching EP I kept thinking back to Stephen Frears' Dirty Pretty Things, but couldn't put my finger on why that was (beyond the fact that both movies explore immigrant ties in present-day London). Turns out they were both written by the same guy: Steve Knight, whose Amazing Grace is also a much much better movie than it had any right to be.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Eastern Steelbooks June 22 2014
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
The Eastern steel book is very nice. If you collect steelbooks, add this one to your collection. You won't regret it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great unexpected pleasure. July 29 2013
By Larry
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
I was unaware of this movie until i viewed it.Very glad i did as i enjoyed all aspects,solid script,good acting,strong directing.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not what i expected July 25 2013
By Jesse
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
It wasn't a bad movie by any means, I think I just went into it with all sorts of other expectations. It's an above average crime movie, the story is a little reminiscent of Chinatown, and there's a cool naked fight scene. Viggo does a convincing German accent too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie April 25 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This movie I could not find in stores, I guess its a little bit older. But the movie was awesome, and had some very shocking twists at the end that I did not see coming.

Also it is a great peek into the Russian mafia. But over all it was a great movie and a good addition to my collection.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Jenny J.J.I. TOP 500 REVIEWER
Film noir was (and is) one of the most celebrated sub-genres in American film. Thus it's strange to see how few noirs have been made since their golden age in the forties and fifties. There was Polanski's masterful "Chinatown", the handsomely crafted and atmospheric "L.A Confidential", and if you're willing to stretch the idea, Michael Mann's menacing, dreamy "Collateral" felt rather nourish. And now we have David Conenberg's "Eastern Promises"--at its heart merely a well-made crime mystery, taken up a notch by Cronenberg's grisly, brutal direction--a follow-up to his masterful "A History of Violence", to add to that list of modern noir.

Plot-wise, EP has enough twists and turns to keep viewers interested in its dark, seedy tale. Its central mystery revolves around the diary of a 14-year-old Russian girl, discovered by an English midwife Anna (Naomi Watts) after the girl gives birth and subsequently dies. Since the diary is written in Russian, Anna takes it to a Russian restaurant to get translated (after her bitter Uncle at first refuses). It is here she meets Semyon (Armin-Muehl Stahl), a man who speaks so eloquently you know he's rotten to the core.

And he is. In fact, he's the head of an entire crime syndicate; mostly though, we the audience get to know two members of his entourage: son Kirill (Vincent Cassel) and their driver Nikolai (Viggo Mortenson). The performers are all great; Naomi Watts brings some personality to a character who seems to be written with none, Vincent Cassel is memorable, and Stahl's presence radiates with calm power.

Of course, it's Viggo Mortenson's performance everyone is talking about.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
First class film and seller
Published 16 days ago by Paul Salmond
4.0 out of 5 stars purchase
This movie, is heartless and not, heavy. it is not for everyone to enjoy. For a used productcondition. Read more
Published on Sept. 24 2011 by etoile4u
4.0 out of 5 stars Cronenberg Delivers Again After "A History of Violence"
Eastern Promises may not be a great film, but it certainly is a very good film. Cronenberg gives us a very worthy effort after his wonderful last film, A History of Violence. Read more
Published on Nov. 29 2010 by Moodywoody
2.0 out of 5 stars Less Than Mediocre Gangster Film
It is always an uphill battle to criticize a great filmmaker like David Cronenberg (A History of Violence, Dead Ringers). Read more
Published on April 4 2008 by K. Driscoll
2.0 out of 5 stars Less Than Mediocre Gangster Film
It is always an uphill battle to criticize a great filmmaker like David Cronenberg (A History of Violence, Dead Ringers). Read more
Published on April 4 2008 by K. Driscoll
4.0 out of 5 stars Cronenberg and Mortensen a winning team yet again
"Eastern Promises" is a very engaging film by Canadian director David Cronenberg. It's about a Russian mafia member (Mortensen) who gets tangled up with an British doctor (Naoi... Read more
Published on Jan. 12 2008 by Matthew King
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best films of 2007!! Eastern Promises delivers!!
Eastern Promises is an amazing film. It's masterpiece. David Cronenberg directs this movie which centers around the Russian mafia and a diary and a newborn baby. Read more
Published on Jan. 7 2008 by Vader
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