6.8/10
5,663
42 user 29 critic

Little Odessa (1994)

R | | Crime, Drama | 19 May 1995 (USA)
Early 1990s drama about a family of Soviet Jews living in Brooklyn's Brighton Beach ocean-side neighborhood nicknamed Little Odessa.

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4 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Plot kept under wraps.

Director: James Gray
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Alla Shustervich
...
Irina Shapira
...
Boris Volkoff
Natalya Andreychenko ...
Natasha
...
...
Sasha
Mina Bern ...
Grandma Tsilya
...
Ivan
Mohammed Ghaffari ...
Pahlevi
...
Yuri
Dmitry Preyers ...
Victor
David Ross ...
Anatoly
Ron Brice ...
Man with One Leg
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Storyline

This film tells a bitter tale of a dysfunctional family. Joshua, a cold-blooded professional killer, returns to his Brighton Beach boyhood home for a "job." He knows it will be difficult to return to the Russian-immigrant community of his youth--in his eyes, we see anticipation of the inevitable emotional pain and psychic turmoil that seeing his forsaken family and estranged companions will bring him. To do his job, and try to maintain some semblence of sanity, he has had to wall off his humanity from even himself. Seeing his kid brother, who adores him, talking with his dying mother, who still loves him, and yes, arguing with his abusive father, begins to wreak havoc with his personal defenses. As his steely demeanor begins to dissolve, we are shown the soul of a hit-man crumbling away, piece by piece. Finally, all that he now allows himself to admit that he loves is agonizingly torn away from him and he is left with the ultimate punishment for his transgressions. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Brothers in blood. Partners in crime. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong shootings, sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 May 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Contract Killer  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,300,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$1,095,885 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It took director James Gray two years to get the financing in place to make the film. See more »

Goofs

Obviously shot out of sequence because snow can be seen in some shots and not the next. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Joshua Shapira: It's done.
See more »

Connections

References A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Where is James Gray now?
19 June 2000 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

A stunning debut by this young writer-director -- Dostoyevskian themes, an exact sense of place, and a lyricism touched by few of his peers. And now six years' wait!

While most U.S. indie filmmakers spent the 1990s studiously copying Tarantino, Gray in this overlooked gem created something entirely different: a character study of tragedy among the unhip and uncool. Torn by illness and the return of a prodigal son, a Russian immigrant family in New York tries to outlast the omens promising its destruction. The film owes something to Coppola, but you might feel the presence of Bergman, too. Unsentimental, unsparing, with brilliant performances by the principal cast. A must see.


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Why I absolutely hate this film. fabergelover
This is it! glueyporch
Another obliquely Dull film with russian mobsters hughes-trent
Why is there only a FF DVD available? harryknuckles
what is the piece of music played in the scenes starting with... hauntedwoods
Budget? dwight_mccarthy187
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