Review: Our Kind of Traitor 👍

After last time’s disaster we were hopeful that this week the Sneak Preview could only be better. And it was. We got to see Our Kind of Traitor (German: “Verräter Wie Wir”) [IMDb, Trailer].

Movie Poster “Our Kind of Traitor”

The movie tells the story of slightly naive, moderately successful poetics professor Perry (played by Ewan McGregor). He has been married for 10 years to star-lawyer Gail (Naomie Harris) and by now their marriage has reached an all-time-low. In an attempt to re-ignite their passion, they take a vacation in Morocco. Through some twists and turns, Perry meets Dima (Stellan Skarsgård), a rich Russian man, and his family. After a seemingly harmless couple of days, everything changes, when they learn that Dima is deeply involved with the mafia. Perry stumbles into a world of danger and distrust and cannot prevent his wife from being pulled into it as well.

To be honest, the story is not one of the greatest inventions of this century. There have been movies like this and the setting overall is no novelty. The elephant in the room is: Why are Russians in (popular) movies usually shady, involved with the mafia, emit an aura of unease and portrayed as filthy rich? Maybe that is a relic of the Cold War or something, but it so cliché that it kind of hurts by now.However, despite these obvious problems, the movie still wasn’t bad. We had a good time. There are a lot of very well-done aspects: The actors did a great job, especially Skarsgård playing his role almost like a split personality, torn between intrigue and hiding it from his peers. I particularly enjoyed the calm way the story was presented in: No chaotic action scenes, no overly speedy cuts. This has become quite rare and I do appreciate it, if a director makes an effort to make a movie work and capture the audience through images, soundtrack and good acting, rather than flashy cuts and aggressive camera work.And while we are on the topic of music: The soundtrack is really well done. It is subtle and you hardly ever actively notice it, but there are quite a few moments where a quietly starting song turns the mood of a scene from serene to unsettling. Most of this I only notices a while after it happened.

Final verdict: A good and captivating movie to watch, highly recommended if you enjoy a more classic cinema experience.

I published this review a while ago on Google+.

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