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Brighton Rock

28 customer reviews

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(Dec 27, 2011)
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Editorial Reviews

Based on the iconic Graham Greene novel and set in 1964 s Mods- and Rockers-infused Britain, screenwriter Rowan Joffe s debut feature BRIGHTON ROCK embraces the classic elements of film noir and the British gangster film to tell the story of Pinkie, a desperate youth who is hell bent on clawing his way up through the ranks of organized crime.  When a young and very innocent waitress, Rose, stumbles on evidence linking him to a revenge killing, he sets out to seduce her to secure her silence.  Starring up-and-coming British actors Sam Riley (Control) and Andrea Riseborough as the young couple, and co-starring veterans Helen Mirren (The Queen, Red) and John Hurt (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, V for Vendetta) as two friends who set out to save Rose from Pinkie s deviant designs, BRIGHTON ROCK is a sexy, stylized re-telling of one of the classic tales of innocence and evil.

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Product Details

  • Actors: Sam Riley, Helen Mirren, Andrea Riseborough
  • Directors: Rowan Joffe
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MPI HOME VIDEO
  • DVD Release Date: December 27, 2011
  • Run Time: 111 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #115,353 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By JCY 500 on December 28, 2011
Format: DVD
Rowan Joffe's 2010 adaptation of Graham Greene's classic novel, originally filmed in 1947, has been updated to the setting of early 1960s England. It is gripping from beginning to end, with superlative acting, writing, and cinematography.

The opening scene shows a gangster desperately making a phone call to one of his mates. He is on the run, and there is nowhere to hide. Before a fellow gang member can get there, the rival gang has killed him. Young Pinkie Brown, portrayed by the impressive Sam Riley, arriving on the scene, knows his life has changed. Events have forced him to make a decision - should he take the helm of his gang? A following scene shows his hesitancy in killing the man who killed his boss. At that point, he can't quite muster the determination, and anger, required to kill his boss' assassin. That soon changes - he grows into the role he has assumed for himself.

He also has to deal with a possible witness to a crime he and another gang member have committed. The witness, a young woman named Rose, who just happens to be in the vicinity of the crime, saw Pinkie and a fellow gang member as well as the member of the other gang who had killed their leader. Shortly afterward, Pinkie and Spicer, his mate in the gang, kill the other gang member under the boardwalk.

Rather than risk her telling her story to the police, Pinkie decides to "romance" her. Romance, however, is an inaccurate word for his intentions - he simply wants to prevent her from talking. The scenes detailing their emerging relationship are a bit hard to accept. Pinkie shows little affection or humor in their interactions. One gets the feeling that he has scant ability to show emotion to anyone, and little experience dealing with women.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Megan Hewins on February 15, 2012
Format: DVD
I was really surprised by how much I liked this production of Brighton Rock. As any Graham Greene fan knows, good adaptations of his novels are hard to come by. In film adaptations, the real marrow of what Greene fleshes out in the novel is missed. In his earlier novels, that usually is Greene's inextricable belief in God and his obsession with the power of belief, especially in regard to Catholicism. This production misses that in a general sense. Lip service is payed to the Catholic connection, yet the film manages to convey those themes of damnation and salvation all the same. Sam Riley's truly young and innocent looking baby face coupled with his bone chilling performance as the ruthless gangster Pinkie entirely steals the show from this production's formidable cast. Andrea Riseborough plays a splendid Rose. John Hurt and Helen Mirren support the film with flawless performances from both veteran artists.

There are plot departures from the book. And not all are minor departures and these may upset you if your a purist. However, I feel the essence of what Greene intended with his novel was seen and brilliantly portrayed in this film. The different ending from the novel is unfortunate, but in spite of that, the strength of the film and Riley's unparallelled performance hold it together.

Highly Recommended!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 3, 2011
Format: DVD
BRIGHTON ROCK is a British remake of the 1947 brilliant film noir based on the novel by Graham Greene an adapted for the screen by Graham Greene and Terrance Rattigan. This BRIGHTON ROCK has been updated from the original 1930s setting to the 1960s and the screenplay is by Rowan Joffe (who also directs) - tough competition with the original writers! The result is a dark film that relies on performances by some actors who are not up to the task and makes them seem even more weak by the presence of such brilliant actors in smaller roles as Helen Mirren, John Hurt, Philip Davis and Andrea Riseborough.

The story takes place in 1964 in Brighton, once a quiet seaside town, is suddenly overrun by gangs of sharp suited Mods and greasy Rockers looking for a riot. Looking to be the top Mod gangster, Pinkie Brown (Sam Riley) will stop at nothing to be the biggest name in the crime world - bigger than the competitor Colleoni (Andy Serkis). Pinkie witnesses the vicious death of fellow Mod Kite (Goeff Bell) and is determined to kill the perpetrator Hale (Sean Harris). Pinkie's ruthless and violent ambition takes over his mission and when he discovers that a waitress named Rose (Andrea Riseborough) who works at Snows, a cafe run by Ida (Helen Mirren), is involved tangentially in the murders, Pinkie decides to court the plain jane Rose, knowing that if he marries her she cannot testify against him should she discover Pinkie's guilt in the murders. Ida had a 'connection' with Hale and sees through the veils of deceit Pinkie is placing on the innocent Rose, and she and her longtime friend Phil (John Hurt) undermine Pinkie's plans. Pinkie marries Rose - a gesture that secures Rose's fascination and new love for Pinkie - to keep her from testifying against him.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Stephanie De Pue VINE VOICE on September 20, 2012
Format: DVD
"Brighton Rock," (2010) is, apparently a British television treatment, the second adaptation to be made, of outstanding British author Graham Greene's classic, early career, downbeat novel of the same name, Brighton Rock. This 111 minute full-color romantic crime drama/thriller, for which I see a BBC Television production credit, was the film debut of Rowan Joffe (28 Weeks Later / 28 Days Later (2-Movie Box Set)), who both adapted for the screen and directed. It draws upon film noir and gangster elements from its predecessor, and did receive a theatrical release.

The production has been moved from the Depression 1930s, in which it was written and set, to the fraught 1960s, during which, in Britain, sharp-suited Mods and greasy Rockers were frequently at each others' throats. It is, of course, still set in Brighton, once a quiet seaside resort town, with some historic artifacts and buildings from the days when it was a favorite royal resort. Mod gangster Pinky Brown, survivor of a rough childhood, has witnessed the vicious death of fellow Mod gangster/surrogate father Kite at the hands of Hale, member of an opposing gang. So Pinky makes it his business to execute Hale. But the none-too-bright Rose, who waitresses at the local tea room, Snow's, has been immortalized in a shot by a boardwalk photographer of Hale and her that shows Pinky following Hale, just behind his prey. Older and wiser heads in his gang advise him to romance and seduce the waitress, in hopes of preventing her telling the police what she saw. So Pinky begins on this program, which he finds rather distasteful.
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