Red Sparrow is a film starring Jennifer Lawrence (Hunger Games/Passengers) as Dominika Egorova. A ballerina turned into a spy cum assassin. Dominika suffers an injury that ends her dance career so her uncle offers her an alternative job.
This begins her changing career, training to be a spy. She has a mother to care for and medical bills to pay. She is forced to continue with the job, after a bungled first operation where she has to saved by her uncle’s guard Simionov and the man she was sent to meet is shot. The only other option would have her killed, so there’s no witnesses as the man Simionov had to eliminate was a politician.
Her code name is Sparrow and she is to use her looks to seduce other men into getting information out of them. After training, the main assignment she gets is to find out who someone called ‘Marble’ actually is. Nobody knows and only CIA man Nate Nash (Joel Edgerton) might have a link.
Sparrow is to seduce Nash and get the identity of Marble and it seems a simple enough mission. She doesn’t realise that Nash has never met ‘Marble’ either and that she is about to embark on the biggest mission, one that will test her loyalties, love and life to the limit.
This might sound like a standard spy film but Jennifer’s presence does lift it. The others characters are less well written and this lets down the story at times.
It’s quite sexual in nature as she has to seduce her ‘targets’, but it’s not tacky and it does show some of the training agents go through. Although overall I found it had a mournful tone. This was due at times the characters are quite mistrustful, making you wonder how they could work together.
The level of violence at times was quite striking, with vicious fighting and torture scenes. These were not necessary and were out of place with the slow parts of the film. One scene in a bathroom reminded me of Psycho except Dominika isn’t the victim she’s the one who is striking out.
There’s a lot of travel included and I felt this could have been trimmed. Did she really need to keep going here, there and everywhere?
There’s little humour and it ended up more being a gritty drama. Most films these days I notice are darker in tone.
It’s a 6/10 from me. There was too much violence. There was little fun as well but the mark is higher as Jennifer Lawrence always turns in a great performance.
Image reproduced from IMDB.
Trailer reproduced from AMC Theatres.
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