After a mission in Sweden goes terribly wrong, an assassin (George Clooney) arrives in Italy and hides out in a small town where he gets to know a girl (Violante Placido)… but his enemies are after him. Director Anton Corbijn followed his impressive debut Control (2007) with a thriller that some critics found pretentious. Actually, they’re confusing it with European; the settings, Corbijn’s sentiments and the international cast influence the way a rather simple story is told. Slow at times, but ultimately touching as we get to know a lonely and cold-hearted predator who may finally learn how to make love, not war. Excellent performances by the two leads.
2010-U.S.-Britain. 105 min. Color. Widescreen. Produced by George Clooney, Anne Carey, Jill Green, Grant Heslov, Ann Wingate. Directed by Anton Corbijn. Screenplay: Rowan Joffe. Novel: Martin Booth (“A Very Private Gentleman”). Cinematography: Martin Ruhe. Cast: George Clooney (Jack/Edward), Violante Placido (Clara), Thekla Reuten (Mathilde), Paolo Bonacelli, Johan Leysen… Irina Björklund, Björn Granath.
Last word: “I […] came across the script for this story and went to read the book, upon which I realised there was a better script to be written. But the core of the film is the question of whether a person can change himself… that’s the essential thing. In our lives, it’s whether we can turn things around if we discover that our lives are empty or wrong in his case. So, taking that core question, we put a body around it of a suspense thriller. But at the same time I saw the possibility of putting an element of the Western in there, so there’s all these references to Westerns as well. The structure is like a Western.” (Corbijn, indieLondon)