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Road to Perdition (2002)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  12 July 2002 (USA)
Your rating:
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 190,557 users   Metascore: 72/100
Reviews: 1,002 user | 221 critic | 36 from Metacritic.com

Bonds of loyalty are put to the test when a hitman's son witnesses what his father does for a living.



(graphic novel), (graphic novel), 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 19 wins & 68 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Rob Maxey ...
Craig Spidle ...
Rooney's Henchman
Ian Barford ...
Rooney's Henchman
Stephen P. Dunn ...
Finn McGovern's Henchman (as Stephen Dunn)
Paul Turner ...
Finn McGovern's Henchman
Kathleen Keane ...
Irish Musician
Brendan McKinney ...
Irish Musician
Jackie Moran ...
Irish Musician


1931. Mike Sullivan and Connor Rooney are two henchmen of elderly Chicago-based Irish-American mobster John Rooney, Connor's father. In many respects, John treats Mike more as his son, who he raised as his own after Mike was orphaned, than the volatile Connor, who nonetheless sees himself as the heir apparent to the family business. One evening, Mike's eldest son, twelve year old Michael Sullivan Jr., who has no idea what his father does for a living, witnesses Connor and his father gun down an associate and his men, the situation gone wrong initiated from an action by Connor. Caught witnessing the incident, Michael is sworn to secrecy about what he saw. Regardless, Connor, not wanting any loose ends, makes an attempt to kill Mike, his wife and their two sons. Mike and the surviving members of his family know that they need to go on the run as Connor, who has gone into hiding, will be protected through mob loyalty, especially by John, who cannot turn on his own flesh and blood. Still,... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Every father is a hero to his son. See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

12 July 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Camino a la perdición  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$22,079,481 (USA) (12 July 2002)


$40,935,560 (Europe) (10 January 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The diner where Tom Hanks and Jude Law meet was bought on the internet by production designer Dennis Gassner for $20,000. See more »


When Michael and his son first arrive in Chicago, there is a brief shot of bright silver metal cars on the El. They were introduced in the 1980s. In 1931, the cars would have been made of wood and painted dark brown. See more »


[first lines]
Michael Sullivan, Jr.: There are many stories about Michael Sullivan. Some say he was a decent man. Some say there was no good in him at all. But I once spent 6 weeks on the road with him, in the winter of 1931. This is our story.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Thanks to all at the Donmar Warehouse Theatre, London See more »


References Peeping Tom (1960) See more »


Old Torn Petticoat
Performed by the "Irish Musicians" (John M. Williams, Kathleen Keane, Brendan McKinney,
Jackie Moran and Kieran O'Hare)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Simply Beautiful
2 March 2005 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

I loved so much about this movie...the time taken to develop the characters, the attention to detail, the superb performances, the stunning lighting and cinematography, the wonderful soundtrack...

It has a combined intensity and lightness of touch that won't work for anyone who wants the typical fast-paced action flick. If we lived in Elizabethan days, I'd say this movie's a bit like a Shakespearean tragedy. But since we don't, let's say it's more like a Drama-Suspense movie.

The plot is simple, but the story is complex. The movie is intelligent in the way relationships and issues are explored. Much of the story is shown rather than told, which I find makes it more subtle and moving - and which also works well for a story based on a comic book (or graphic novel). At times I felt I was actually there in the 1930s, part of this story - there was such a realistic yet dream-like quality in the style of its telling.

I don't often prefer movies to the books they were based upon, but in this case I do. (Though I did enjoy the book too.) I've bought the DVD, which is great because it has some wonderful deleted scenes and insightful commentary.

(I also took my little cousin, who's a little younger than the boy in the movie, to see it after I saw it for the first time, because he has issues at home and I wanted to use this as a way of starting a discussion on father-son issues with him. He loved it - and the discussion.)

86 of 101 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Your problems with this film. Seriously. clearAlex
Musical score... hugely underratead? slapnutz777
Why cast Tom Hanks for this role? gordml
Great movie, but that shootout scene..... dsh1998
One one the most underrated movies..... liljayl23
why wasn't the photographer called off, since it all ended? AbdulRahman789
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