Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
A History of Violence
Tom Stall had the perfect life... until he became a hero.
An average family is thrust into the spotlight after the father commits a seemingly self-defense murder at his diner.
Oh, that's why it's called A History of Violence. Before today I thought the film is about violent events spanning over a period of time, you know, a history of violence? Violence's history? Nevermind, I'm dumb.
The film? It's violent alright. Didn't know you can fuck up a person's face this bad with only your bare hands. Ed Harris is the boss. Aragorn is the boss's boss. (Everyone in the film seems to call him Tom. Yeah right, you're not fooling anyone. He's Aragorn.) Awesome performances throughout.
I think I should mention that this is my first Cronenberg film. I understand this is his least interesting work. A toned down Cronenberg. I am aware of that. That is exactly why…
From a violent and jarring crime tale to a humorous picture of normal small town life; from a genuine and tender marriage story to a dark and gritty comic book film; and from a mob tale to an emotional survivalist story, David Cronenberg's A History of Violence in all of its loops, shifts in tone and stirring emotion, is all around faultless. Even in its reputation as a mainstream departure, Cronenberg keeps a perfect handle on everything that defines him, and just possibly makes his masterpiece out of it.
Never once does the film feel commercial for the legendary auteur, only as clean, smooth and flowing as one director can make such a layered thematic tale into a film. The…
Very direct in its approach & unrelenting with its subject matter, A History of Violence concerns Tom Stall, who lives a quiet life with his family & owns a diner in a small town of Indiana. Things are set in motion when one day Tom foils an attempted robbery at his diner, killing the two thugs, & finds unwanted fame n attention from the residents thus becoming the town's local hero overnight. But new men soon arrive in town looking for someone Tom claims to be not. But as the story progresses, we soon find out about Tom's violent past that he had buried years ago.
Loosely based on the 1997 graphic novel of the same name, the film is brilliantly directed by…
A couple years ago, this film was firmly in my Top 50. I haven't seen the film for a couple years now, and by the time I did my top 100 Letterboxd list, this was no where in sight. I've decided this film requires a rewatch.
This film is a delight from Cronenberg. It mixes various little film influences together into a great little story. But the film wouldn't work without the acting. Mortensen gives one of his best ever performances as a man with a deeply hidden past identity. Maria Bello is solid with some great acting scenes. Ashton Holmes gives a memorable teen performance as well.
Then you have Ed Harris effortlessly stealing the show, and William Hurt…
For many years when I was a lot younger I confused David Cronenberg and David Lynch. They both had silly hair and tended to be very serious looking. Cronenberg made interesting, strange films that required your attention and Lynch made movies I have had real trouble fathoming what they were even about. I have seen more Cronenberg than Lynch and it will probably stay that way for some time as Cronenberg's work suits my taste a little more than crazy Dave.
"A History Of Violence" is a film that was developed from a graphic novel of the same name. As you may have guessed this film is littered with some lovely gratuitous violence mostly dished out by the hand of…
Second watch of Noir-Vember. Much like David Cronenberg’s other output ‘Eastern promises’, which I watched and reviewed last week, ‘A History of Violence’ equally displays an ordinary family getting involved with organised crime. This one, however, has more secrets than its first act would acknowledge! Viggo Mortensen shines again in the lead role, but his supporting crew is a bit of a let-down - especially Ashton Holmes as the son and Maria Bello as the wife, both who appear very unnatural and awkward. Nevertheless, ‘A History of Violence’ is an enthralling picture with an original ternary chapter division and shockingly brusque transitions. Moreover, the film does honour to its title as its limited action sequences are flat-out brutal and certainly…
Like a Bruce Springsteen song taken to hell. The American Dream is an illusion, or a matter of choice. Things are never as they seem on the surface.
On its surface A History of Violence may not seem like what most would expect of a film from Cronenberg although there are many Cronenbergian elements its ripcurrent. That is however until it pulls a certain Jekyll/Hyde maneuver and everything that seemed to be was changed, and if one expected the mystery to dissolve, it doesn't, it only becomes foggier.
Like a fable of Old Testament vengeance and New Testament redemption. If Jekyll killed Hyde, would Hyde stay buried, or would he resurrect himself if push came to shove?
I've wanted to…
Though I felt the film was just fine on the direction, cinematography, and acting front, the film shines in how its script and themes come together to make quickly escalating and engaging story that opens up some questions about morality, forgiveness, and of course violence, and seals itself as a really good film with an absolutely perfect final scene.
A departure for Cronenberg, on the surface at least. A History of Violence isn't narratively smart or exciting, nor will it surprise you; it is a film unequivocally concerned with its characters though, each one played phenomenally and led by the totally convincing turn of Viggo Mortensen.
When one of the waitresses working for Tom Stall (Viggo Mortensen) is threatened, Tom kills her attackers and becomes a local celebrity. This attention brings Carl Fogarty (Ed Harris) to town, convinced Tom is Joey Cusack, a former associate in the Irish Mob. The truth of Tom's past threatens to destroy his family.
To his credit, Viggo Mortensen has used the success of the Lord of the Rings to focus on smaller films, more personal films.
Maria Bello who plays Tom's wife, Edie, is a solid background performer but has yet to breakthrough to more mainstream success.
From Christof to Jackson Pollock to John McCain, Ed Harris is always dependable, including as a mob enforcer here.
William Hurt was nominated…
A History of Violence is a direct and straightforward film about the crushing effects that violence has on the lives of people. Viggo Mortensen stars as the small-town diner owner who life gets wrecked when several acts of escalation mob attacks enter his life. The film focuses itself almost entirely on him, which is both good and bad. Mortensen's character is not all that interesting and with the exception of a few BA fight scenes, his growth is simplistically straightforward. The good thing about focusing on him is that the only other character who gets any real screen time is his son, who is a horribly boring a clichéd individual... so I guess I am thankful the brunt of the film is on Mortensen's shoulders. Overall, its entertaining and accessible, but too short and simplistic to be anything greater.
Film 443 of my 2015 500 Film Challenge
A History of Violence really is what the title sounds like, your violent past coming back to haunt you, and even that past will eventually catch up to you and ruin everything. After becoming a hero when he saves the diner he works at from a robbery, Tom (Aragorn, son of Arathorn) is crowned a hero and a five minute news wonder. This catches the eye of some people who believes he is someone who claims he is not. Violence ensues.
As you can expect from the title, yes, this is an extremely graphic and violent film, every kill is gory and visceral, which I expect from David Cronenberg other the hit…
Cronenberg's exploration of how violence is inextricably present in modern American culture is thrilling, gripping filmmaking. Viggo Mortensen features in a career best performance in a subtle, understated and nuanced turn as Tom Stall. This violent, gritty and visceral film stands out in Cronenberg's filmography as one of his most capable and accomplished ventures. Just watch it - you certainly won't regret it.
An embarrassing first time watch for me. Glad I finally got around to it. This could easily go five stars on a re-watch.
Cronenberg makes an awesome commercial film here, really upping the ante on the sex and violence usually found in Hollywood action movies. A nice tight 90 minutes. You know where it's going right from the beginning but it's a hell of a ride.
Viggo and Maria Bello turn in great leading performances, and Ed Harris and William Hurt are pretty good too. But how was Hurt the only one nominated here?
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
This is another movie that I have seen on cable a few times, but never watched it all the in one sitting.
Great movie though. I like how he shoots William Hurt...
Combined the average ratings (Critic's & Users) from IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic and Letterboxd, and then weighted and tweaked the results…
Originally a list made prior to Cannes 2014, now updated every mid-April.
This is every Palme d'Or nominee since the…