D.J. Haza presents the next entry in his series of films to watch before you die…
In Bruges, 2008.
Directed by Martin McDonagh.
Starring Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, Ralph Fiennes and Clémence Poésy.
In Bruges is a black comedy crime film written and directed by award winning playwright Martin McDonagh. The films follows Ray (Farrell) and Ken (Gleeson), two hitmen hiding out in the small town of Bruges, Belgium after a hit goes wrong. Sent there to hide by their boss Harry (Fiennes) they have conflicting ideas of what they should do with their time, Ken wants to explore the culture and Ray hates everything.
As the two of them hide out it becomes evident that they are in hiding due to Ray accidentally killing a child during only his first hit. Withdrawn and wracked with guilt Ray questions his actions and Ken begins to question his own choice of life path. In trying to hide his guilt Ray goes on a date with an attractive local, Chloe (Clemence Poesy), but it turns out that her and her boyfriend make a habit of robbing tourists. Ray also ends up in a drug-fuelled party with a racist dwarf actor, Jimmy (Jordan Prentice), who is taking part in a film shooting locally.
When the call they have been waiting for finally comes from Harry, Ken is instructed that this was a way for Ray to see something nice before he is punished for killing the child. Ken must kill Ray. Now carrying his own guilt Ken approaches Ray with gun in hand, but finds Ray about to commit suicide and stops him. Ken sends Ray away on a train to change his life, but no sooner had he left than Ray returns to Bruges. Harry is furious at Ken disobeying his orders and makes his own way to Bruges to kill the pair of them.
In Bruges is a brilliantly dark and comical tale of remorse and life reflection, but is also so funny and full of brilliant moments that will have you chuckling. Ray’s disdain at being cooped up in Bruges is hilarious as he constantly berates the town, it’s people and even overweight American tourists planning to climb a small and winding tower.
In Bruges is a film you must see before you die because Martin McDonagh is a fantastic writer and his transition from theatre to film has been a great success so far. His original screenplay for the film earned him a BAFTA and his previous short film Six Shooter, which is absolutely amazing, earned him an Oscar for Best Short Film a few years previous. McDonagh is a man to watch in film and I eagerly await his next project.