Movie Review: Dom Hemingway

Dom-Hemingway-PosterIt’s always a thrill to watch a starmaking performance, to witness an actor inhabit a role with singular ferocity. All the more astonishing is when this revelation happens to be an actor who has been in the spotlight for two decades and hasn’t really given a flicker of this genius before. And so it is with the formerly fey Jude Law who becomes the husky, hulky, wily and menacing ex-con safecracker central character of writer/director Richard Shepard’s Dom Hemingway (B). This rowdy British import has more bark than bite as Law’s character spews his witty cock-of-the-walk braggadocio and occasionally reveals he has a tender side too. The strongest plot line transports Law and sidekick (Richard E. Grant) to France where a debonair Demián Bichir and mysterious Mădălina Diana Ghenea treat them to 007-style intrigue. Later subplots fare a little less successfully, and there could be better character development in a couple of critical story points, but it wraps up well. The bawdy and imaginative script – including funny title cards – keeps things brisk and surprising. And you simply won’t be able to watch Law the same way again after watching him portray this corker of a criminal in reform.