So, I felt sufficiently guilty at the Book God’s lack of enjoyment of the last film we watched together (as explained here) that the very next evening I suggested he pick something that would make up for it. And he selected Road to Perdition, for which I am very glad.

This is just a gorgeous film.

Which seems an odd thing to say about a film about gangsters, murder and the aftermath of murder, but at its heart is the story of a flawed man and the son who worships him. A story about the choices we make on how to live our lives and the consequences of those choices. A story about the sons we have and the sons we wish we had.

So basic plot stuff is that Michael hides in his father’s car one evening out of curiosity for what he does for a living, and finds out in the most graphic way possible that his father is a killer, a gangster who works for the powerful Mr Rooney and is basically his enforcer. For all sorts of reasons they have to go on the run, and the film tells their story.

I loved this to bits, for all sorts of reasons. It’s film with a huge amount of humanity at its heart. The acting is superb, especially Tom Hanks. When I see him do something like this I always wonder how he manages to end up in tosh like The Da Vinci Code, but there you go. The supporting cast are all excellent, especially Paul Newman, Daniel Craig and my great favourite, Stanley Tucci. The standout of course Tyler Hoechlin who plays young Michael.

It’s a visually beautiful film, enhanced by a wonderful score, and just shows what a great director Sam Mendes is. It’s interesting to compare this to Public Enemies which I watched and reviewed recently. Similar subject matter in so many ways, but while I enjoyed the Michael Mann film it seems overly glossy when compared to this.

The Book God has been going on about this film for years and I’m so pleased that I sat down and watched it with him at last.

Wonderful stuff.

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