Rent Red Sparrow (2018)

3.1 of 5 from 958 ratings
2h 14min
Rent Red Sparrow Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
  • General info
  • Available formats
Synopsis:
Jennifer Lawrence is Dominika, a former ballerina forced to enter Sparrow School, a secret government program that thrusts her into a treacherous espionage game between Russia and the CIA. She emerges trained as a lethal agent, but is trapped in a world she desperately wants to escape.
Actors:
, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Judit Rezes
Directors:
Producers:
Peter Chernin, David Ready, Jenno Topping, Steven Zaillian
Writers:
Justin Haythe, Jason Matthews
Studio:
20th Century Fox
Genres:
Action & Adventure, Top 100 Films, Drama, Thrillers
BBFC:
Release Date:
09/07/2018
Run Time:
134 minutes
Languages:
English, English Audio Description
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.40:1
Colour:
Colour
Bonus:
  • Director Commentary by Francis Lawrence
  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Director Commentary by Francis Lawrence
BBFC:
Release Date:
09/07/2018
Run Time:
134 minutes
Languages:
English, English Audio Description
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.40:1
Colour:
Colour
BLU-RAY Regions:
B
Bonus:
  • A New Cold war: Origination and Adaption
  • Agents Provocateurs: The Ensemble Cast
  • Tradecraft: Visual Authenticaly
  • Heart of the Tempest: On Location
  • Welcome to Sparrow School: Ballet and Stunts
  • A Puzzle of Need: Post-production
  • Director Commentary by Francis Lawrence
  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Director Commentary by Francis Lawrence
BBFC:
Release Date:
09/07/2018
Run Time:
134 minutes
Languages:
English, English Audio Description
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.40:1
Colour:
Colour
BLU-RAY Regions:
B
Bonus:
  • Director Commentary by Francis Lawrence

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Reviews (11) of Red Sparrow

Cold war inspired thriller - Red Sparrow review by Sandy

Spoiler Alert
18/08/2018

OK, the story features a young Russian ballerina who is persuaded to join the Russian Intelligence services. She is sent to training school, where she learns the art of seducing information out of subjects before being sent on a mission. The presentation of the FSB is not much more than the usual cliched stuff found in Bond movies and spy thrillers from the cold war. There's nudity, violence and silly Russian accents with warnings of you being shot - it almost looks like a Russian version of La Femme Nikita.

So, the agent is sent off on assignment and it starts to get more complex and convoluted. The problem is that a lot of the complications, and the resolution are internal ones so as a viewer it is very difficult to understand what is happening and why - so when it gets to the final reel, the viewer is left somewhat cold.

Jennifer Lawrence gives a good performance, but the story is confusing at points and cliched in others, which means you don't come away with a great impression. I'm sure there is a great cold war thriller somewhere that revolves around a seduction agent, but this isn't it.

5 out of 5 members found this review helpful.

Curiously watchable despite itself - Red Sparrow review by Alphaville

Spoiler Alert
09/09/2018

This is a curiously episodic film that can’t decide what it wants to be, which results in some ridiculous creative choices. In the first half Jennifer Lawrence, after spending five minutes being a leading Bolshoi ballerina (!), is forced to go to ‘whore school’ to learn how to be a honey-trap spy. It’s voyeuristic nonsense, with full-frontal nudity (male, of course, because this is the 21st century) and gratuitous sex scenes (despite what the director says on the DVD commentary).

After an hour or so a proper plot kicks in when our Jen is assigned to extract secrets from CIS agent Joel Edgerton. Will she use this as a chance to escape her fate or won’t she? A cat-and-mouse game ensues, but the film never lets us know which side she’s on. It mistakenly puts mystery above empathy, which diminishes the drama. Another tonal mistake is a gratuitous torture scene straight out of a horror film.

Curiouser and curiouser, the plot seems to skip beats, as though scenes are missing, which further adds to the mystery of many of the characters’ dramatic arcs. And on top of all this, the shenanigans is played put to a score that’s more suited to a melodrama.

The result is a film so curious that is actually quite watchable, even if only for its mis-steps.

4 out of 4 members found this review helpful.

Waste of time - Red Sparrow review by JM

Spoiler Alert
29/05/2018

I don't know why I bothered seeing this film given Jennifer Lawrence's virtue signalling reputation. What a complete waste of time that was! I would not recommend.

3 out of 12 members found this review helpful.

Critic review

Red Sparrow review by Mark McPherson - Cinema Paradiso

Jennifer Lawrence certainly goes the extra mile for Red Sparrow, more than any role prior, at least when it comes to physicality. Here is a spy thriller where she is forced to strip naked, be raped by men, and tortured by being pulverized in the face. All of this happens more than once, to the point where this is almost an exploitation piece for how much nudity, rape, and violence she endures. And it very well may be exploitation considering the film says more about Lawrence’s ability to do a nude scene than anything about international politics and intrigue.

Lawrence plays Dominika Egorova, a Russian ballet dancer that unfortunately finds herself being forced into the world of Russian espionage. Her leg damaged, she needs to find a means of supporting her ill mother. So her uncle (Matthias Schoenaerts) offers her a job in spying and she is sent to training which seems to include seduction and lockpicking. But mostly seduction, to an absurd degree where part of her training is having sex with Russian soldiers. She fails the let-the-rough-Russian-rape-you-in-the-shower test but makes up for it in the in-class assignment of getting-naked-and-insulting-a-soldier’s-penis exam. This type of “training” goes on for such an agonizing amount of time one wonders if the script was stapled together with a Russian porno.

This deconstruction of character in the first act makes the second act of going on her mission and seeking safety and survival far less engaging. Dominika is tasked with traveling to Budapest to make get close to a CIA agent played by Joel Edgerton and out a Russian mole. Notice how bland that story sounds, dressed up as a Cold War thriller without any of the cold or thoughtful nature. It plays like an amateur Tom Clancy novel written by a horny teenage boy who liked to fast-forward to the naughty bits of films like The Comformist. Of course, Dominika will become sexually involved and find more meaningful sex in her mission but it comes off almost as standard as Russian spy procedure, as the movie cannot pass into the next twenty minutes unless there is a sex scene.

But the film never really reaches any of its heights for erotic or intense spy work. We never even see Lawrence come into her own as Dominika, a spy built more for taking punishment than doling it out. She never seems to have much of a personality, more caught up in her game of deception than questioning it deeper than she is in the picture. Edgerton is doing the best he can as a love interest but even he feels woefully underutilized in a film that requires both him and his character to keep things low. And despite some fine performances from Jeremy Irons and Ciaran Hinds, both contribute so little that their lines sound as though they’re from other movies.

The theatrics of Red Sparrow may be enough to appease spy-lovers but it’s merely a tiny and burnt steak with a pound of ketchup caked to cover its dry nature. It’s a cold war thriller that ends up being too cold with its intrigue to ever be engaging, despite the film’s attempt to heat itself up with an extra dose of exploitation. And at 2½ hours of spy cliches and soulless sexuality, it’s a bit of a chore to slog through, even for one that comes touted with a naked Jennifer Lawrence. That may be enough for 14-year-old boys but the adults will find themselves as jaded to this farce as Dominika is to the trust of government.

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