I’ll be honest. I wasn’t expecting much out of “Red Sparrow.” I went into the movie knowing that I wasn’t a Jennifer Lawrence fan, but still wanted to see what the film was about.
And it was pretty evident from the beginning that my initial thoughts were going to change. I really enjoyed this film.
In it, Lawrence plays Dominika Egorova, a ballerina in Russia who takes care of her ailing mother during the day and dazzles the dance community at night. But an accident sends her into early-retirement from the world of dance, due to no fault of her own, and her family’s livelihood faces an uncertain future.
She’s thrust into the intimidating Sparrow School, an intelligence service training ground where young men and women are schooled on how to use their bodies as weapons. Sparrows are used as agents by the government to get information on their enemies. And it soon becomes a merry-go-round of emotions and situations that leave you wondering just whose side Dominika is on.
I have to tell you, this movie was a tad bit more gruesome than I expected. The sound editing — along with the incredible score — is top notch. You hear every miniscule sound that you need to hear. Every bone crack, every punch, every slice … you name it. And while this is a spy thriller, and there are only a few fight scenes. The crux of this film’s focus is on the psychological complications of its characters.
The movie was done well — there are twists and turns that are unexpected. And the few I figured out, wound up being pleasant outcomes solely because the sequences unfolded how I wanted them to.
The mind and the ability to use knowledge and persuasive skills to extract information is heavily employed in this film. And Lawrence shines best in terms of her manipulations. She tends to give off a stoic, bored vibe on screen and it’s highly noticeable in other movies. But for “Red Sparrow,” it absolutely works for her character. If anything, it’s a plus. Because of the nature of her character’s “assignments,” not showing too much emotion is the end goal. It’s what’s taught heavily at the Sparrow School.
My only gripe about the movie was Lawrence’s Russian accent. It didn’t convince me. But that is minor compared to the rest of her performance.
If for no other reason, you’ll want to see this in the theater because of the sound quality. The score truly drives the film and is a perfect sidekick to the action of “Red Sparrow.”
If you do see it, I’d love to know your thoughts.