Road To Perdition

Movie Review by Dr Kuma

Starring: Tom Hanks, Paul Newman, Jude Law, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Stanley Tucci, Daniel Craig

Director: Sam Mendes

In Sam Mendes latest film, bonds of loyalty are put to the test when a hitman’s son witnesses what his father does for a living. Mike Sullivan (Tom Hanks) is a hit man for crime boss John Rooney (Paul Newman), whom Sullivan views as the father he never had. However after his son witnesses him carrying out a murder, Sullivan finds himself on the run trying to save the life of his son and at the same time looking for revenge on those who have wronged him in the past. His plans are made more difficult by the attentions of a photographer (Jude Law) who is also the hit man Rooney has now hired to kill Sullivan. ROAD TO PERDITION has been hailed in the US as one of the greatest movies of all time, but is it? The answer is simple – no.

Although the movie looks fantastic, it is far too predictable for its own good. We know how the film will end half an hour into the proceedings, so no matter how fantastic it looks it’s really only padding out the running time until the grand finale, which is a shame as it feels as though this really should have been more memorable. The simple fact is that it’s too structured. The music and cinematography are, as I have hinted, exceptional and stands alongside the other greats of the gangster genre (ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA, THE GODFATHER, GOODFELLAS) in that sense, but in no other way. A great gangster film is like a great western, but this film comes across like a buddy bonding movie or a Greek tragedy, no more. It’s just not as involving as it should be.

ROAD TO PERDITION is a very good film but the advance word of mouth has harmed its impact. Those expecting a classic will be very disappointed.

Dr Kuma’s verdict: An offer you may choose to refuse.

4 out of 6 stars