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Child 44 (2015)

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A disgraced member of the Russian military police investigates a series of child murders during the Stalin-era Soviet Union.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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970 ( 20)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Tortoise
...
...
...
Karel Dobrý ...
Photographer
...
...
Nina Andreyeva
...
Fyodor
Jana Stryková ...
Mara
...
Anatoly Tarasovich Brodsky
...
Zina Gubinova
...
Semyon Okun
Jemma O'Brien ...
Elena Okun
Lottie Steer ...
Tamara Okun
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Storyline

Based on the first of a trilogy by Tom Rob Smith and set in the Stalin era of the Soviet Union. The plot is about an idealistic pro-Stalin security officer who decides to investigate a series of child murders in a country where supposedly this sort of crime doesn't exist. The state would not hear of the existence of a child murderer let alone a serial killer. He gets demoted and exiled but decides, with just the help of his wife, to continue pursuing the case. Written by Arnold

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

How do you find a killer who doesn't exist? See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, some disturbing images, language and a scene of sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

| | | |

Language:

Release Date:

17 April 2015 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Crímenes ocultos  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$621,812 (USA) (17 April 2015)

Gross:

$1,206,135 (USA) (8 May 2015)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the third of four movies that Fares Fares and Nikolaj Lie Kaas starred together. The other are The Keeper of Lost Causes (2013), The Absent One (2014) and A Conspiracy of Faith (2016). See more »

Goofs

Mother of the killed boy says he was Leo's godson. This implies a religious affiliation, which in Stalinist times would have been an impossible thing to a high ranking officer of the Soviet army/militia. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Tortoise: Your father?
Young Leo Demidov: [yes]
Tortoise: Dead?
Young Leo Demidov: [yes]
Tortoise: What's your name?
Young Leo Demidov: I don't want it any more.
Tortoise: I'll give you a new one. Leo. Like a lion.
See more »


Soundtracks

Symphony No. 6 in B Minor, OP.74, Pathetique
Written by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (as Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky)
Performed by Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra
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User Reviews

 
Too many weak points
21 April 2015 | by (Ghent, Belgium) – See all my reviews

A crime thriller, set in the Soviet Union during the Stalin era: it sounds like a good idea. And it probably is, but unfortunately 'Child 44' doesn't have what it takes to be a really good film. Some things are well done: the oppressing atmosphere of living in a police state, and the courage it takes to go against of the powers that be, are very convincing. That's partly because of the excellent cinematography, full of grey colours conveying the joyless society that Soviet Russia must have been; and partly because of Tom Hardy's convincing lead.

Hardy shows exactly the right amount of tenacity to make him believable as the Russian war hero who becomes an outcast because he refuses to denounce his innocent wife, against the will of the regime. Only after he exposes the incompetence of the police force in a series of child killings, he gets rehabilitated.

The weak point of the film is the script. It takes a long while before all elements of the story are clear, and the quick succession of events at the start is a bit confusing. Moreover, the story is spiced up with some action scenes that are not well executed and unnecessary. Also, the tear jerking scene at the end is at odds with the hard-boiled story.

What really annoyed me (and I think I'm not alone) is the language. The actors speak English with a mock Russian accent. This half-hearted way of solving a language problem makes some dialogue almost ridiculous. Just let them speak normal English. I know, that makes the film a bit less authentic. But nobody spoke English with mock Russian accents in Soviet Russia.


17 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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It is one the best films I've ever seen. gat_ubela
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