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When a disgraced former college professor has a romance with a mysterious younger woman haunted by her dark twisted past, he is forced to confront a shocking secret about his own life that he has kept secret for 50 years.
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Turning her back on her wealthy, established family, Diane Arbus falls in love with Lionel Sweeney, an enigmatic mentor who introduces Arbus to the marginalized people who help her become one of the most revered photographers of the twentieth century.
Robert Downey Jr.,
Margot and her son Claude decide to visit her sister Pauline after she announces that she is marrying less-than-impressive Malcolm. In short order, the storm the sisters create leaves behind a a mess of thrashed relationships and exposed family secrets.
Jennifer Jason Leigh,
Internet love connections and mail-order brides rarely ever work out, and John should have known. Having never been lucky in the game of love and tired of waiting for the perfect woman to come along, John decides to take his chances and orders a mail-order bride from Russia online. At first, things seem perfect: his new bride Nadia is a gorgeous woman, and although she may not speak much English, her skills in the bedroom more than make up for any communication problems. When Nadia's 'cousins' unexpectedly arrive to celebrate her birthday, John is drawn into their web of corruption and crime. Written by
Nicole Kidman went to the Russian Embassy in Australia for help in speaking Russian. She didn't work with any other coach on the set except the woman from the embassy. See more »
Between the time that John leaves the airport and arrives at the hotel after chasing the taxi, he has shaved. See more »
[first lines - to the camera]
Running, reading, going out, staying in, countryside, films - if they're good. Intelligent, of course, kind, pretty - I suppose, but it's not critical. Someone you can *really* talk to. I think communication is key.
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A good premise, but the overall film is just so-so...
John (Ben Chaplin) is a hapless bachelor in St. Albans, looking for love in all the wrong places. So he goes online and orders a Russian mail-order bride. She arrives in the form of Nicole Kidman. Although her background is questionable and her English is fragmented, she's great in bed, so he has no complaints.
However when her "cousins" appear at his door a whole new world of deception and violence opens up for John, pulling him deeper and deeper under.
The premise for the film is fairly good, but the overall execution is just so-so. Nicole Kidman gives a really good performance (worthy of a better film) but Ben Chaplin is just OK. He slaps her around a bit, which is about as daring as his character manages to be. Anyone could play the role, so he's kind of stuck in a rut.
The movie is grungy, dark and feels independent - it's hard to imagine Hollywood royalty Nicole Kidman signing onto it, but she is really the reason this film remains interesting and engaging. Without her, I don't think I would have bothered to sit through all of it.
14 of 17 people found this review helpful.
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