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Enemy at the Gates

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Right from the get go Enemy had a few flaws...First and fore most is the way the cast speaks. Pure and proper British. Sure the two leads are British (Law and Fiennes) but, um, they play Russians...Fighting Germans...Very distracting. Compounded by the fact the Russian uniforms (though I am certainly no scholar on war fashions) were this kucka brown/green similar to the Brits. So quite often you were put in a mind twist when they suddenly showed newspapers, graffiti etc. in Russian.." Your mind would quickly check its
self-"Oh, yeah, it's Stalingrad, not London, right."

What, the actors couldn't manage a few lessons with an accent specialist? Can you even imagine Schindler's List with proper British accents? No. Of course not.

EATG's story goes...It's WW2. The Russian moral is low. They are losing thousands to the Germans daily. What they need is an all-Ruskie-common-man hero.

Soviet yuppie, and journalist, Danilov (Joe " Please leave Ralph out of this!" Fiennes) thinks his friend sniper Vassili (Jude " Cherub faced" Law) would be just the comrade for the troupes and people of the Soviet to adore.

They begin a campaign. Real propaganda filled
pro-Russian hype. The Germans get quite annoyed as
this hero-sniper offs more and more Germans to the glee of the Russian people. They decide to send in their top sniper to wipe out their top sniper. A real hard ball game of Risk.

The Nazi they send is Mjr. Koenig (Ed - looking quite sharp all nazied up- Harris).

Meanwhile, love's sniper, mythical Cupid hits both Danilov and Vassili's heart with a sharp arrow pointed straight at local peasant turned soldier, Tania ( Rachel Weisz). Will this be the ruin of the two? Can their friendship sustain the interference of penis envy? Will Mjr. Koening get his man?

EATG tries so hard to pull at your heartstrings.

The acting is absolutely the draw here. Rock solid. But the story, while entertaining at times, is long and just not intriguing enough to keep you enthralled.

The Fiennes family is a talented and attractive lot. You've got ultra handsome filet of manbeef with an extra helping of man yum pototoes brooder extraordinaire, Ralph, sister Martha a darn good film director, another brother a musician, yet another a gamekeeper, etc...And the matriarch was (as she's sadly passed) a free spirited soul and author, Jini. Then there's little Joey. He's not as swell on the retina as Bro. Ralphie but he's holding his own... His eyes are like pools of sensuality. Luring, calling, dare I say bellowing for one to get lost in ...excuse me...He's as intense as his grossly thespian sibling, granted, and proving he too can titillate your fancy with theatrical orations worthy of your hefty movie ticket fee.

His costar, Jude Law, is such a manfest powerhouse it only strengthens Fiennes' performance. Hey this Jude guy is a scrumptious little British teacake from North Umberland with full fat butter melted atop!

Even in a light hearted casually elegant little role like The Talented Mr. Ripley, or as a trashy and quickly disposed of manboytoy, as in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, Law manages to steal a bit of his better known costars glimmer and momentarily take some of the glow for himself. His flawless job as lead here in Enemy at the Gates may just catch him his own well-deserved little shooting star.

If your a fan of any the cast, see this just for the stellar performances (and handsome facades) they cast onto celluloid with albeit moronic accent that repeatedly throws your suspension of disbelief. But don't expect another wartime epic worthy of multiple viewing...Say an English Patient or Saving Private Ryan period
piece with soul and girth. It's the two handsome leads alone that even makes this watchable, once.

Girly Note: You may want to pack your MPK
(movie puke bag) if you decide to see this...the "love" scene is filthy—literally. You are less interested in their lovemaking techniques, than
you are worried about the kind of infections those dirty exploring fingers could cause. Yech. Hardly erotic.

Snack recommendation: stergeon, caviar and vodka—natch

Starring: Jude Law, Joseph Fiennes, Ed Harris, Rachel Weisz and a sore infested Bob Hoskins.

Directed by: Jean- Jacques Annaud

 

 

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Nine out of ten of
my psychiatrists recommend it!- EM


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