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Eastern Promises

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United Kingdom, Canada, United States · 2007
Rated R · 1h 40m
Director David Cronenberg
Starring Naomi Watts, Viggo Mortensen, Vincent Cassel, Armin Mueller-Stahl
Genre Thriller, Crime, Mystery

A Russian teenager, living in London, dies during childbirth but leaves clues to a midwife that could tie her child to a rape involving a violent Russian mob family. As the midwife, Anna, looks deeper into the teenager's life, she becomes entangled in the world of the Russian mob, endangering her - and the baby's - life.

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What are critics saying?


The Hollywood Reporter by

Cronenberg and screenwriter Steve Knight masterfully orchestrate an atmosphere of danger and dread for a descent into an underworld inhabited by the Russian mafia in London.


The New Yorker by Anthony Lane

Cronenberg made a movie called “The Dead Zone,” and I sometimes wonder whether, for all his formal brilliance, he has ever torn himself away from that locked-in, airless state of mind. You walk out of Eastern Promises feeling spooked and sullied, as if waking from a noisome dream.


Village Voice by J. Hoberman

A rhapsodic movie directed with considerable formal intelligence and brooding power from an original screenplay by Steve Knight, Eastern Promises is very much a companion to "A History of Violence."


ReelViews by James Berardinelli

Eastern Promises is a jumbled string of mob-related clichés that mesh into something that’s derivative and at times uninteresting.


Chicago Tribune by Michael Phillips

An unusually strong crime thriller, Eastern Promises comes from director David Cronenberg, a meticulous old-school craftsman of a type that is becoming increasingly rare.


Entertainment Weekly by Owen Gleiberman

It's an academic meditation in underworld-thriller drag -- a movie that looks about as close to a straight-ahead, down-and-dirty genre entertainment as anything the director has made since his exploding-head horror days.


Rolling Stone by Peter Travers

In Eastern Promises, shot to envelop by the great Peter Suschitzky, Cronenberg brings us face to face with the horror of self.


Variety by Todd McCarthy

A superbly wrought yarn set in the milieu of first-generation Russian mobsters in London that is simultaneously tough-minded and compassionate about the human condition, Eastern Promises instantly takes its place among David Cronenberg's very best films.

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