Mike Sullivan works as a hit man for crime boss John Rooney. Sullivan views Rooney as a father figure, however after his son is witness to a killing, Mike Sullivan finds himself on the run in attempt to save the life of his son and at the same time looking for revenge on those who wronged him.
Damnation Alleyway. When his son witnesses him enacting a hit, mob enforcer Michael Sullivan finds that the man whom he likened to a father has ordered a hit on him and his family. Too late to save his wife and youngest child, Sullivan goes on the run with his eldest boy and plots revenge along the way. How refreshing to find a gangster movie in the modern age, more so, how refreshing to find a gangster movie set in the early 1930s and not involving foul mouthed Mafioso types. Directed by Sam Mendes and starring Tom Hanks, Paul Newman, Daniel Craig and Jude Law, Road To Perdition is an adaptation of the Graphic Novel that was brought to us by Max Allan Collins & Richard Piers Rayner. The film deals with themes of violence and its consequences and fathers and sons, set to a watery back drop during the Great Depression. It's also a pulse pinging treat of visual magnificence thanks to cinematographer Conrad L. Hall (his last film before he passed away). Comparisons with great gangster film's of the past are inevitable, but Mendes' film has more in common with something like "Eastwood's Unforgiven" and "John Ford's The Searchers", the journey of the lead protagonist is fraught and telling, and motivated by circumstance. Yet the trick for first time viewers that Road To Perdition has up its sleeve, is that we don't know how it will work out for Hanks' Sullivan. It makes for a riveting experience with many transcendent rewards along the way. As regards the cast, Hanks is a touch miscast, but his play off relationship with the quite terrific Newman gives the film some solid ground from which to launch the sombre story. Daniel Craig does a nifty line in weasel and Law convinces as a mouldy toothed hired killer who enjoys taking photographs of his victims. Pic has almost philosophical mediations on good and bad, and it's elegiacally drawn by Mendes. The melancholic mood is enhanced by Thomas Newman's musical score, where he reworks his "Shawshank Redemption" score for narrative tightness. The film thrives as a poetic and atmospheric piece. The story might be basic, but it manages to rise above that because it be a superbly directed and well acted picture. One that just happens to be beautiful in spite of the bleakness that lingers on the main protagonist and the journey he undertakes. 8/10
**Overall : With so much going for it, The Road to Perdition is surprisingly disappointing.** After hearing Road to Perdition referred to as a classic multiple times, I was interested. Then seeing that it boasted a cast of Tom Hanks, Daniel Craig, and Stanley Tucci and that Sam Mendes directed it, I was even more intrigued. Finally, after seeing the trailer and its promise of some cool action scenes, I was excited to watch this movie! But sadly, The Road to Perdition greatly disappointed. I will be honest and say that this isn’t a typical movie I enjoy, but the film was long and very slow. The action scenes were few and far between, with almost every second of action showcased in the trailers. The ending didn’t surprise and left me even more frustrated as I watched the entire film. Not a fan.