Little Odessa (Gray, 1994)

A downright depressing tale of a Russian/American family’s destruction, lead to the slaughter by Tim Roth’s prodigal son/hitman returning home. Director James Gray (The Yards) gets two fine lead performances from Roth and Edward Furlong playing his kid brother torn between a life of crime and family. The sometimes horrendous production value (the boom mike can be seen in multiple shots) hinders the overall impact, but by and large a solid debut effort by a key independent filmmaker who continues to obsess over family corruption and in turn the devastating consequences (see the upcoming We Own the Night).

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