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The International

3.8 out of 5 stars 204 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Interpol agent Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) is determined to expose an arms dealing ring responsible for facilitating acts of terrorism around the globe. But as his investigation leads Salinger and his partner, Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Eleanor Whitman (Naomi Watts), deeper into the secret world of greed, corruption and murder, they become targets of a deadly conspiracy so vast, they soon find the only people left to trust?are each other. This pulse-pounding thriller plays a high-stakes game of suspense, intrigue and explosive action.


The International is actually two movies in one: A highbrow thriller about a sprawling bank that resorts to murder and arms sales to retain its power, and a sleek visual essay on how architecture and interior design shapes your perceptions. Interpol agent Louis Salinger (Clive Owen, still not quite a star despite Inside Man and Children of Men) has been on the brink of conclusive evidence against the villainous international bank, but his sources always end up dead. With the aid of a Manhattan district attorney (Naomi Watts in a woefully underwritten part), he stumbles on the trail of the bank's favorite hit man, who might provide the (literally) smoking gun Louis needs. The International starts out smooth and silky, with visual style to burn and Owen's intense fervor. The plot gradually bogs down in incoherent moralizing, but along the way there are some taut sequences, including a bloody shootout in the Guggenheim Museum where alliances shift unexpectedly. But what makes The International worth seeing is director Tom Tykwer's astute eye for public space: Chic postmodern buildings, broad Italian plazas, Turkish rooftops like mountain paths--Tykwer orchestrates actors through these architectural shapes, his hypnotic visual sense creating far more tension and excitement than the plot. Also featuring Armin Mueller-Stahl (Eastern Promises) and Ulrich Thomsen (The Celebration) as malevolent Europeans. --Bret Fetzer

Stills from The International (click for larger image)

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Clive Owen, Naomi Watts
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: French, English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 9, 2009
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (204 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001V7UTV6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,211 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The International" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
"The International" is a good and honest movie. Hollywood generally doesn't release movies that are fairly original and intellectually respectful to the audience. The story deals with world bank corruption and how it's not the money that motivates them, but rather the power of enslaving nations and people with debt. If you know anything about the fractional reserve system of current banking, then this movie makes a lot of sense. I am surprised that Hollywood would release a movie like this.

The movie doesn't try to be more then it is. It does, however, take the audience on a journey to explain how the current economic situation could possibly be manipulated. The movie does follow some cliches, but I felt they were handled in original and artistic ways. The Guggenheim scene was very interesting and an original place to stage a Hollywood shootout. The story from start to finish is solid and easy to follow. There were no huge plot twists, however the character resolutions have their complexities and the finale is a little peculiar, but still gratifying and complete.

Clive Owen gives a wonderful and believable performance as a man over the edge and determined to expose the truth of this cloak and dagger organization. Naomi Watts does a good job as a supporting character and doesn't get in the way of the story, but she amplifies it when necessary.

I greatly enjoyed this movie. I skipped seeing it at the theater because it looked a little long, but after watching it on DVD my worries that the plot would be thin were put to rest. The story keeps the flow going and the audience interested the whole time.
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Format: Blu-ray
Reviews have been quite mixed on the content and quality of this film, but without a doubt this Blu is an excellent piece for the those seeking competent clarity, BD production and special features. The film offers a mixed bag and is understandably panned for the later acts "bogging down" or a confusion as to what kind of film it is trying to be, but in the end - I was impressed by a thoughtful and well preserved product.

The picture is reference quality throughout. The landscapes, architecture, streets, wide overhead pans, rooftop panoramas, and nighttime depth all shined in clarity, aspect and colors. Customers were very impressed with certain scenes that captured the international buildings.

The sound is 5.1 TrueHD, which gets used extensively on the score and singular long shooting sequence, but little else to speak of there (I am a big DTS fan).

The special features are what make this package a five star, even if you rate this film as low as a three.

- An extended scene between our two leads; an eleven minute sequence that orginally ran much less (just prior to the scene where he dunks his head in the ice water).

- A thirty minute making-of that thoroughly covered all aspects of filming. Interestingly, it covered the production in sequence with how the film was released (beginning to end). The next two features should have been included but were separated into:

** a six minute architecture documentary about the locations, and a seven minute addendum about shooting at the Guggenheim (pun intended) that was better covered in the main documentary; it almost felt like a snippet that played on a network or ad plug.

- A five minute insight about filming being allowed for the first time at the Autostadt factory for VW.
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3 Comments 18 of 21 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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THE INTERNATIONAL is a film that wants to be two kinds of movies at once, and somewhat drops the ball on being either very effectively.

This tells the story of an effort by law enforcement officials to bring down The International Bank of Business & Commerce, the IBBC. This bank, we're told right from the start, is involved in weapons trading and many shady deals involving violent overthrows of governments and so forth. They don't really make money off the arms dealing, they make money handling the debt of the newly emerging governments. They are a ruthless bunch, operating like a shadowy intelligence agency...assassinating those who stand in the way, bribing others. There is no way to bring them to justice, it would seem, because they have their fingers in every pie, and will kill anyone who might get in their way.

So first, THE INTERNATIONAL wants to be an "intelligent" thriller, with lots of suspense generated by the political and economic machinations of men in business suits talking in hushed tones. We see the good guys and the bad guys both discussing with each other the ramifications of one course of action or another. There is lots of globetrotting, with scenes in Luxembourg, France, Italy, the US & Turkey. These scenes are only moderately interesting, because in the end, the schemes of the bank are only drawn out in the most simplistic terms (the movie wants us to FEEL that everything is richly detailed and complicated, but it really isn't). AND, most importantly, the actions of the bank don't really feel entirely credible. Not that a financial institution wouldn't align itself with some really bad guys...but the whole thing really just feels like a half-baked Roger Moore-era James Bond kind of plot.
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8 Comments 42 of 54 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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