The latest adult spy movie “Red Sparrow”, arrestingly visceral and cerebral at the same time introduces high-end assassins and spies ready to kill and destroy at all costs without the usual gun and gadgets fare typical of recent spy films.
Based on the tome by Jason Matthews, “Red Sparrow” is directed by Francis Lawrence that stars an impressive, international cast that includes Jennifer Lawrence, Joel Edgerton, Charlotte Rampling, Joely Richardson, Matthias Schoenaerts and Jeremy Irons.
Jennifer Lawrence takes on the shoes of prima ballerina Dominika Egorova who, after suffering an injury is pulled into the world of espionage by his patriot Uncle Vanya (Schoenaerts). Against her will, Dominika becomes an asset of the Russian government in order to keep her home and medical care for her mother (Richardson). She is then admitted to Sparrow school, where her sexuality is weaponized as she plays pawn to the powers that forced her into becoming a spy. Her training ultimately leads her to CIA operative Nate Nash, portrayed in the film by Joel Edgerton. Author Matthews explains the unusual courtship between Nate and Dominika: “Inevitably, they fall in love, which is dangerous and forbidden for him. Like Romeo and Juliet, it’s a love affair that can’t end well.” Dominika is actually a civilian who is forced into a spy plot, and whose training in spy craft is a means to survive, and to protect her mother.”
“Dominika and Nate have a really interesting relationship,” observes Jennifer Lawrence. “Because they both been assigned to one another to get information and in this process of manipulating each other they fall for each other. Their relationship is constantly changing because how can you trust somebody not to be tricking you when you are trying to trick them? So they’re constantly balancing this inherent trust that they both have in each other with the basic paranoia that goes with living in a life of international espionage.”
The actress enjoyed the process of working with Edgerton: “I love Joel!” she laughs. He’s so talented. His accent was flawless, which was very intimidating for me as I tried to master a Russian accent. And he’s just fun, a really hard worker and he played the character perfectly. I can’t imagine it being anyone else. He brought so much more to the movie and so much to that role.”
Edgerton also responded to Red Sparrow’s cerebral approach to the spy genre. “I think it’s somewhat more interesting that the operatives are not smashing cars and shooting machine guns,” he says. “What they’re doing is often a big psychological game of chess.”
“There has not been a Francis Lawrence movie like this,” concludes Peter Chernin. “And there has not been a Jennifer Lawrence movie like this and there has never been a spy movie like this! It's a gripping and emotional ride, full of twists and turns, you will be immersed in it and leave talking about it. That's a promise.”
“Red Sparrow” is now showing (opened February 28) in cinemas nationwide from 20th Century Fox. Rated R16 by the MTRCB without cuts.
The movie is also available in IMAX, with its floor-to-ceiling screen, crystal clear images, and surround sound system that will all let you see, hear, and feel even the tiniest of actions like exactly when a pin or tear drop falls. With every detail enhanced by IMAX’s digital re-mastering, you will be sure to seize every feature of the film – from its bursts of action, sultry scenes, to its heart breaking moments, IMAX is designed to make your movie bigger and better.