Title: Red Sparrow
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Joel Egerton, Jeremy Irons, Matthias Schoenaerts, Mary-Louise Parker, Charlotte Rampling and Joely Richardson.
Director: Francis Lawrence
Runtime: 2 hours 21 minutes
Released: OUT NOW!
Dominika Egorova is a ballet dancer, she’s brilliant, but when a clumsy dance partner breaks her leg, her career is over. Her apartment and her Mother's medical bills are paid by her ballet company. No longer able to dance she is forced to find alternative employment. Her Uncle pushes her onto a job as a seductress/spy and she helps them take out a high profile political target. Later she undertakes training at Sparrow school - a secret intelligence service that trains exceptional young men and women to become agents using their minds and bodies to seduce targets.
However the training is sadistic and horrifying. Several scenes of the sparrows being trained to use their sexual abilities to get information from whomever they're targeting are tough to watch. A scene of attempted rape and more than one scene of forced sex acts are especially difficult. They don't quite show everything but what is implied is more than enough to make viewers uneasy.
Jennifer Lawrence has demonstrated throughout her career from her debut in Winter's Bone that she is a fearless actress. This is especially true in recent films such as Mother! and now Red Sparrow. Joel Egerton plays a fairly simple role of an American spy who recruits Dominika to the American side. But even he has a nasty torture scene to endure.
The direction is uncompromising. It shows the horrors of torture and sexual exploitation. There are several distressing scenes. It's often very uncomfortable viewing. And there's an especially vicious fight scene towards to end. Due to these factors it's an extremely difficult film to recommend unless you really enjoy spy movies that are exceptionally realistic. Does the storyline justify the exploitative nature of the film? That's for you to decide.
Is Dominika loyal to Russia - despite her own handlers abusing and torturing her, or will she defect to work for the Americans?
It’s a treat to watch anything on 4KHD ultra image quality. The transfer is extremely clear, the image is crisp, the colours are deep and rich with a superb contrast ratio. The sound is also amazing through a 5.1 sound system.
4K Ultra HD™ & Blu-ray™ SPECIAL FEATURES
· A New Cold War: Origination and Adaptation
· Agents Provocateurs: The Ensemble Cast
· Tradecraft: Visual Authenticity
· Heart of the Tempest: On Location
· Welcome to Sparrow School: Ballet and Stunts
· A Puzzle of Need: Post-Production
· Director Commentary by Francis Lawrence
· 10 Deleted Scenes (With Optional Commentary by Francis Lawrence)