Eastern Promises
Our Rating
2 Stars - Fair
Average Rating
(1 user ratings)ADD YOURSHelp
Mpaa Rating
R (for strong brutal and bloody violence, some graphic sexuality, language and nudity)
Directed By
David Cronenberg
Run Time
1 hour 40 minutes
Josef Altin, Mina E. Mina, Aleksandar Mikic, Sarah-Jeanne Labrosse
Theatre Release
September 21, 2007 by Focus Features

In 2004, screenwriter Stephen Knight went prowling in the London underworld and found one of the year's best big-screen stories—Dirty Pretty Things. In that film, illegal immigrants accepted laborious, thankless, humiliating jobs just to scrape up enough cash to survive. For some, desperation led to dangerous deals, like selling their bodily organs to the black market. But the underworld's overlord was eventually challenged by a brave, compassionate man—a hotel employee with medical skills—who stood up to defend the defenseless.

This year, Knight goes deeper into London's shadows and finds another story about monstrous people who take advantage of the vulnerable. He also finds another conflicted soul who takes measures to help a woman in jeopardy. This time, that "hero" is a member of the Russian mafia.

It starts like this: When a midwife named Anna (Naomi Watts) saves the unborn child of a dying Russian woman, she decides to look for the infant girl's family. How can she locate them? Anna decides to sift the dead woman's diary for clues.

But there's a problem. The diary's in Russian, and Anna needs help translating it. Her parents (Sinead Cusack and Jerzy Skolimowski) are reluctant; they think that the dead woman's belongings should be left alone.

So Anna appeals to a Russian restaurateur, a softspoken fellow named Semyon (Armin Mueller-Stahl). Semyon is more than willing to translate the diary. In fact, he has a personal interest in it. He's the head of the local Russian mobsters, and he suspects that the diary may reveal some of his deepest, darkest secrets. When Anna realizes her mistake, it's too late—she, her parents, and the infant are caught in the claws of London's most dangerous crook.

These ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Browse All Movie Reviews By:
Read These Next
Current IssueDo We Treat Sunday the Way the Earliest Christians Did?
Do We Treat Sunday the Way the Earliest Christians Did? Subscriber Access Only
Historian Justo González charts how observance of the Lord’s Day has changed over time.
TrendingISIS Kills 29 Christians on Church Bus Trip to Popular Monastery
ISIS Kills 29 Christians on Church Bus Trip to Popular Monastery
(UPDATED) Egypt cancels Ramadan’s opening celebration as Copts resist revenge.
Editor's PickDo This in Remembrance
Do This in Remembrance
Participating in the “high holy day” of American civil religion is beneficial for Christians, so long as we do so thoughtfully.
Christianity Today
Eastern Promises
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

September 2007

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.