In Bruges Review – OMG, What a Fine Movie!

We’re mildly high on Orberry, a variation of the venerable Martini that we made and consumed not too long ago.

So we can’t even remember how we stumbled upon the English film In Bruges that we watched yesterday.

In any case, we’ve spent the better part of today hurling choice epithets at ourselves for not watching In Bruges earlier.

Can’t recollect any of you schmucks suggesting the film either (now that would be too much to expect from y’all, right?).

A brilliant and highly entertaining film, In Bruges is sheer joy. All 107 minutes of it.

If we were to summarize In Bruges, here’s how we would describe it twitter-style:

Brilliant acting + solid screenplay + fine photography + amusing dialogs = A rare, must watch film.

Directed and written by Martin McDonagh, In Bruges is to use a cliche a dark comedy.

The movie is about two hit men Ray (Colin Farrell) and Ken (Brendan Leeson) who are ordered by their boss Harry (Ralph Fiennes) to lie low in the lovely Belgian tourist town of Bruges after their last job goes horribly awry (a young boy gets accidentally killed).

Not in the least bit interested in the tourist stuff about the medieval town and the tower and such stuff, Ray hates loathes Bruges and badly wants to get back to London.

Ray’s buddy Ken is the opposite, soaking in the picturesque town, the medieval tower, the old church and all.

The two are a study in contrasts.

Ray, quick to offend and take offense while Ken is the more composed fellow.

They wait in Bruges for the call from Harry.

Ken eagerly taking in the sights as the extremely restless and brooding Ray finally finds some amusement in the town, first in an American midget actor who is in Bruges on a film-shooting and later a pretty Belgian girl Chloë (the equally talented Clémence Poésy). Chloë’s beguiling charm and fetching smile soon has Ray smitten with her and angling to get into the sprightly girl’s pants.

Well, does Ray hold a similar attraction for Chloë?

And then comes the much anticipated call from Harry.

The nasty, swearing Harry orders Ken to do the unthinkable.

Will Ken agree to take up the assignment? More importantly, will he do it?

Now, we wouldn’t want to spoil all the fun for you, would we?

So, watch the movie to see how it all ends.

Not easily predictable. No sir, not this movie.

The acting is top-notch. Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, Ralph Fiennes and Clémence Poésy do a stellar job and set the screen afire with their performances.

Not surprisingly, In Bruges has either won or been nominated for the most prestigious awards including the Oscar, Golden Globes and the BAFTA.

You’d be a fool not to watch this superb movie.

In Bruges is available at Netflix if you live in the U.S.

As for desis living elsewhere, well your nimble fingers should surely accomplish the hoped-for trick.

29 Responses to "In Bruges Review – OMG, What a Fine Movie!"

  1. joeantony   May 27, 2010 at 3:05 am

    Wondering what took you so long to get to watch this fine flick. I loved it.

    The movie keeps us curious on two things, what has happened before Bruges and what is going to happen ‘In Bruges’.

    Excellent performance by all actors.

    One of the finest flicks you will get to see of all times. Responds:

    1. You Write Above: Wondering what took you so long to get to watch this fine flick.

    All your fault for not mentioning it. We were looking for someone to blame. 😉

    2, You write: Excellent performance by all actors.

    100% true. We liked Collin Farrell a bit more than the others.

  2. sganeshkumar1989   May 27, 2010 at 4:37 am

    My friend recommended this film to me long ago. 🙂 Responds:

    But have you seen it?

    • sganeshkumar1989   May 28, 2010 at 12:07 am

      No,as I had to complete watching many other Popular Hollywood classics,so this one had to wait.
      And I’m not likely to watch it soon,as I won’t use my nimble fingers to watch any film ‘strongly recommended’ by you. 😛
      So,I’ll either wait till UTV World movies runs it on T.V.,or till I get some money to buy its Video. 😉 Responds:

      You’ll likely enjoy the In Bruges. The few readers who have seen it found it very engaging.

  3. racer44   May 27, 2010 at 9:45 am

    Hi SI. Did you check out 7G rainbow colony, that I recommended some time back? As it happened, I myself bought the DVD a couple of days back and finally saw it in its entirety (something I ironically never got around to doing). Simply sublime movie,I tell you. The definitive work on love in an indian setting yet, or as close as it can possibly get to one. Did I mention anything about so-so acting? If so, i eat my words. Because, in the crucial scenes when it really mattered, the lead duo have put in an amazingly realistic performance. Overall, a gut-wrenchingly honest, emotional film which tells it like it is. If you haven’t watched, you are seriously missing a great film, man.

    P.S. I am reading ponniyin selvan to refresh my acquaintance with the series to write the review for you. Just wondering, would you like me to put in a few quotes, and if so, in tamil (written in English) or directly translating the lines. Responds:

    1. We have yet to watch 7D/Rainbow Colony.

    Will try to see it the coming week.

    2. You write: The definitive work on love in an indian setting yet,

    High praise indeed.

    3. You write: I am reading ponniyin selvan to refresh my acquaintance with the series to write the review for you. Just wondering, would you like me to put in a few quotes, and if so, in tamil (written in English)

    Quotes in Tamil (written in English) would be nice.

    Should we expect the review on Tuesday, June 1 or would you require more time?

    Also, given the lavish praise heaped on the book we were wondering if you’d like to do it in two parts (two consecutive days). But we’ll leave the decision up to you.

  4. racer44   May 27, 2010 at 10:47 am

    I’ll try my best to deliver it by tuesday. In any case, i’ll update you on that date so that you aren’t kept wondering. The two-part idea sounds nice. Will see. Thanks.

    Off-topic: saw irumbu kottai the other day. Interesting concept, but the screenplay and the dialogues lacked enough fizz to maintain your belief in the fantasy, a glaring flaw which prevents it from taking its place alongside a much-better crafted fantasy piece, AO. But still, there were a few great laughs along the way and the mood was light-hearted throughout, so it wasn’t terrible either.

    Wonder why STG found it boring. Perhaps too heterosexual for his liking.

    There are, after all three hot voluptuous babes with separate romantic tracks for each, maybe that didn’t go down too well with him. Dunno. Responds:

    You Write Above: saw irumbu kottai the other day….Wonder why STG found it boring. Perhaps too heterosexual for his liking.

    Funny. 😉

    Irumbu Kottai had a short run on the East Coast but we skipped it.

  5. The Mahatma   May 27, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    aw, you have some spoilers about Clémence Poésy.. I know you don’t care.. but I have to flaunt my Poésy-knowledge .. Clémence played Fleur Delacour in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire..

    Have you read Hairy Puttar?.. i haven’t.. I don’t watch the movies either, but I watch scenes involving ex-jailbait Hermione.. to keep track of her growth. I am waiting for the day when she will follow Anna Paquin’s (as in “True Blood”) footsteps.. Have you watched “The Piano”? It was a big deal, in the 1994 Oscars.. when you were M.I.A. Responds:

    1. You Write Above: aw, you have some spoilers about Clémence Poésy..

    Not really but just in case….modified it a bit.

    2. No, haven’t read or seen Hari Puttar, except for some snippets.

    3. The Piano? No, read the first two paragraphs on Wiki and stopped. Looks very interesting. Will watch.

    Sometimes, we think you either have the acting thing or you don’t.

    In Bruges was one of those rare movies where everyone seemed to have it.

    BTW, have you seen In Bruges or just bits and pieces?

    • The Mahatma   May 27, 2010 at 1:04 pm

      the midget did a fine job too.. he emotes quite well in Responds:

      Have to log on to watch. 🙁

      Yes, he was good in in In Bruges too.

      Surprised that no one ever mentioned In Bruges before.

    • The Mahatma   May 27, 2010 at 2:25 pm

      watched the whole movie.. was quite engaging.

  6. yourmate   May 27, 2010 at 11:56 pm

    Off topic…We went to a weekend show for traditional “Light Music” show here in St.louis by Lakshman Sruthi. The show was very entertaining to say the least and they are there in Philly this weekend..not sure how close it is to you, but I would say it is much better than watching any bollywood or tamil movie and for $15 (For a 6 hrs show) it is worth every penny you pay!! There were some really good singers (Krish, Mahathi, Malathi and TMS Selvakumar (son of TMS), Dhanraj etc ) rendering both new and old songs, it was a total paisa vasool and weekend well spent!! FYI Lakshman Sruthi are a guiness record holding troupe (They did a continuous 96 hour show to get into the record books). So if you are willing to travel, do make it and have a very good weekend!! Responds:

    Philly is not far but we have other plans for this weekend.

  7. guruprasad.s   May 28, 2010 at 12:00 am


    A thoroughly engaging movie on the whole, although the ending left me a bit
    underwhelmed. Apart from the lead actors, Bruges itself played a major role.

    In the early part of the movie, Ken is watching a movie on TV in his room, in which a guy runs across and plants something in a car. That movie is Orson Welles’ Touch of evil, and a fairly good movie, starring Welles himself, Charlton Heston and Janet Leigh. You might like it.

    I hope that Golmaal and Witness for the prosecution are still in your scheme of things. Responds:

    What a coincidence! Witness for the Prosecution arrived today.

    The only Orson Welles movie we’ve seen is Citizen Kane. Or maybe just one more film and we can’t remember the name.

    • sganeshkumar1989   May 28, 2010 at 1:14 am

      Lol,guruprasad is always ahead of me 🙁 ,I too thought of recommending ‘Touch of Evil’ to you.A fine thriller. Responds:

      Hey, we’ve seen more than a touch of evil in most Indian movies. 😉

      We’ll watch Touch of Evil for sure. We mean the English version.

    • sganeshkumar1989   May 28, 2010 at 1:25 am

      // Or maybe just one more film and we can’t remember the name.//
      Third Man? Responds:

      Yes, indeed. Thanks. 🙂

      About three or four years back.

      We remember the sewer chase and the fair-ground (??) scenes at the end.

  8. yourmate   May 28, 2010 at 12:02 am

    FYI again, there is a show in Waterbury CT during the 4th of July weekend where Harris Jayaraj is coming and he brings some good singers with him (Karthik, Sadhna Sargam et all…) as bonus you can also see Santhanam (Not sure if you know him), Trisha (Your Favorite actress) and Vikram. Do be taken back by Trisha’s name, definitely she is not coming to act so you can be safe, at least you can listen to some good music (some plagiarized)…Take your choice!!! One more thing most of the proceeds from these events go to a good cause of educating a underprivileged child!!! Responds:

    Imagine paying money to watch Trisha and Santhanam. Sure, we’re crazy but that not far gone yet. 🙁

  9. yourmate   May 28, 2010 at 12:04 am

    I meant do not be taken back by Trisha’s name (Typo!!) Responds:

    We’re already in a high dudgeon on seeing that name. 🙁

  10. sganeshkumar1989   May 28, 2010 at 1:12 am

    Please review Treasure of Sierra Madre(1948) and Dr.Zhivago(1965) for me,as the cost of these 2 videos are very high(200/-,unlike the normal Rs.99/- VCDs of other Hollywood films.),but at the same time,they are hailed as ‘classics’ by many.
    So,I’ll buy one of them,if SI gives its ‘Stamp of Approval’. 😉 Responds:

    Will do soon. Netflix should definitely have both.

    We missed Golimaar yesterday. 😉

    • sganeshkumar1989   May 28, 2010 at 1:28 am

      // We missed Golimaar yesterday.//
      Manchi pani chesavu. 😛 Responds:

      Pee-a-Many must have missed us! 😉

      • shadowfax_arbit   May 29, 2010 at 12:42 am

        Pee-a-Many is in Raavanan too, both in Hindi and Tamil versions – in the key Soorpanaka role. No escape for you!! Responds:

        You Write: Pee-a-Many is in Raavanan too….in the key Soorpanaka role.

        The right role for her it.

        • shiva84   May 29, 2010 at 8:37 am

          Pee-a-Many won national award for best actress. Kaligalam


          Awards in India are not worth the scrap of paper they are printed on.

          According to this news report in the Times of India, even typists get Padma Shris in India.

          We are waiting for the day when Ajith’s dog gets Best Actor award.

    • sganeshkumar1989   August 1, 2010 at 9:27 am

      I’m 100% sure that the 2 movies which I requested you to watch will be 100 times better than some Godaweful films you’ve seen recently. 🙁 Responds:

      Any Kamalini Mukerjee recommendations?

      • sganeshkumar1989   August 1, 2010 at 10:50 pm

        no,I was asking for the reviews of Treasure of Sierra Madre and Dr.Zhivago. Responds:


        Right now watching Jamie Foxx’ Law Abiding Citizen.

  11. guruprasad.s   May 28, 2010 at 2:12 am

    Good to know that Third Man and Touch of Evil have been watched by SI and readers (sganeshkumar1989) here. Indeed the sewer chase in Third Man is difficult to forget,
    as is the opening scene in Touch of Evil (planting the car bomb) which has nice accompanying music.
    Looks like, the list of movies being recommended to SI for watching and reviewing is growing like a divergent series.

    I hope you watch Witness for Prosecution. Responds:

    You write above: I hope you watch Witness for Prosecution.

    We will soon.

  12. racer44   May 28, 2010 at 3:15 am

    Cool man, nobody here is trying to preach to anybody about LGBT or whatever. My remarks were in a lighter vein and not to insult you or anybody else.

    So don’t immediately take offense and launch into cries of “homophobe” etc. Like SI, I couldn’t care less.

    As far as the film’s box office is concerned, IKMS seems to be doing fairly well in the multiplexes atleast, with 2 or more shows in abirami(2 shows), devi(2), sathyam(2), sangam(3), inox(2) amd PVR(3) as of today, and today being the release of the Surya biggie Singam. Would you call this bad, for a small movie with no big stars, production banners or well-known director and that too a month after its release? I definitely wouldn’t.

    And FYI, I am quoting the showtimes from the theatre ads, not the movie ad. And my friends from town centres like viluppuram and dindigul say the film is holding up well there as well, which means a decent performance overall.

    As for your ill-conceived gibe reg. Shakila, well, I can only say you do not understand the world of difference existing between being voluptuous and being fat, with the heroines of IKMS most firmly belonging to the former class and Shakila even more firmly belonging to the latter. Do look up a dictionary, or better, ask SI if you doubt my word. Your argument then becomes wholly irrelevant and silly.

    • STG   May 28, 2010 at 12:29 pm


      Enough of this homophobe crap argument…that fetches nothing.

      Regarding your defense of IKMS…I go with SI on this. Just because a movie makes money, you cannot claim the movie to be good.

      In my not-so humble opinion, this movie is a total assault inflicted over the poor audience especially the children whom the director claims it is targeted at. Period.

      Even so, your argument is wrong..this movie was released on May 7 and just 20 days passed which is less than three weeks. Comparatively, number difference between initial screenings (in north chennai it was released in 2 multiplex and more than 5 single screens) and current (with just 2 multiplex screening twice a day and all the single screens wiped off) is huge.

      This film definitely a disaster at box office. I visited Abirami yesterday and they are all set to kick this film out next week due to poor performance. Apparently a string of releases awaiting. Note that Vinnathandi Varuvayaa is still running even after 90 days.

  13. racer44   May 28, 2010 at 7:13 am

    A few things I better say before you watch 7G rainbow colony.
    1)The protagonists in the film wear their crassness and vulgarity like a badge of honor.( but mind you, they do it with some serious flair) If you’re put off by these elements, you’d better stay away. But what it shows is actually how it happens. From my life in Chennai,I can vouch for that.
    2)You won’t get the sanitized decent women-respecting hero of tamil cinema. The hero, in his own words, is like the shit on the street and nowhere does he pretend any different. So don’t go in expecting a love story of innocent babes like they usually show in Indian cinema.
    The guy is horny, lusts after the girl openly in some scenes, and might even appear as a stalker to western viewers. During all those times, remember these words:this film dishes it out to you straight from real life. If anything, it is a dispassionate critique of the society that we(in chennai) live in and should be seen as such.

    Well anyway, hope you see it soon. Responds:

    Will watch 7G Rainbow Colony next week.

    No, we won’t get put off by the ‘realism’ of the movie as long as it’s done with elan.

    • STG   May 28, 2010 at 2:18 pm

      Definitely 7G is worth a watch (for me multiples). Released in 2004, this movie showcases some bold elements and approaches love through the spectrum of lust. People where shocked on what is shown to them on screen which propagated to the success of the film (same happened for the films Vaali and New).

      My favourite scene is after pre-marital sex, Sonia Agarwal would request Ravi krishna whether he will converse with her whole night. She keeps on talking (muted-only background score) but he would fell asleep quickly. However, she wouldnt mind it and keeps on talking…talking. The scene would be lifted to great heights with a brilliant background music (Yuvan Shankar raja).

      Selva raghavan is one such able director who can make his film resonate well with viewer’s emotions. Responds:

      We saw Sonia maami recently in the Vijay film Madurey.

      Will watch 7G soon.

      • STG   May 28, 2010 at 3:01 pm

        Any plans to watch Singam or you watched and working on the review? Responds:

        No, we haven’t seen it.

        What is your recommendation?

        Driving today is a pain in the U.S. because of Memorial Day long weekend traffic. Usually very bad all over the country.

        What is the buzz on the film – good, bad or ugly?

        • STG   May 28, 2010 at 4:20 pm

          If you watch, it would be a great treat- for SI readers. Not for you. Why? Its a charm to watch you bashing the film from the first scene – till the end title card.

          Some of my friends who watched expressed difference of opinions – some said racy masala entertainer and some said its just the masala kuruma (a dish made out of various vegetables/spices) of Saamy (same director’s blockbuster), Kakha Kakha, etc.

          Unless someone sponsor you – its safe to skip this another so-so commercial potboiler.

          But hang on…you enjoyed Pokiri right? an out and out masala film? So iam in dilemma – you might even like the film.

          I havent watched it yet…but a bird-view of the movie only shows me a red signal…

          Songs – Pathetic…none brings glory
          Vivek – Totally out of form last few years. Expect nothing
          Sun pictures – No comments
          Director Hari – Never think anything innovative and made a open statement that he just want to make film which entertains (?) people without any logic and keeps the cash register ringing.

          No plans to watch.

          Waiting for Raavanan…hope Maniratnam’s neurons are still active 😉

  14. vjcool   May 28, 2010 at 10:05 am

    7G .. nice movie.. anyway I would say the ending stretched.. well the film ended a whole five minutes earlier for me.. but Selvaragavan must have thought it necessary to add the extra 5 mins after the story ended.. anyway I dont mind.. the film remains one of the best.
    the five mins can be treated as a surreal bloooper before the credits rolled.

    Then theres Pudhupettai, when the thing thats lingering on your mind when you are exiting the cinemas is the first song, theres something really wrong with the movie. Right?. But Dhanush’s acting compensates for his physique.. it would have been better to have a little more flesh on that bones. In a way its good movie making, that lacks the little something that makes us wonder what went wrong?, What makes this unsatisfactory. Everyone would have a theory why it is not a good film and would go time and again to watch the movie to see what went wrong. A good movie in a scene by scene sense. Responds:

    We’ll try to watch both films. Hopefully in the not too distant future.

  15. racer44   May 29, 2010 at 1:51 am


    I find our arguments amusing.
    1)Firstly, I didn’t start this “homophobe crap”. You did. So telling me to stop it is meaningless.
    2)You first bluffed that the film was wiped out of all multiplexes in north chennai before modifying your statement to “reduced shows” afterI pointed out the actual showtimes.
    3) My friend in Ambathur tells me that IKMS is still running 4 shows in one Srimurugan theatre there. As far as I recall, Ambathur was very much in North Madras.
    4)Other than that, the film is still running 4 shows in other places in chennai like kamala theatre, Vadapalani, Rohini theatre, Koyambedu and chandran theatre, ashok nagar.
    4)Last but not least, I have never ever claimed that box-office performance indicates anything about how good or bad a film is.

    I have long come to the conclusion that in TN, certain crappy films do poorly, while other equally crappy films run well.

    Much also depends upon the actors, directors, production banners, and importantly, music. Which is why you argument about VTV is like comparing chalk and cheese with respect to the names involved in making the movie.

    The standards for being labelled a decent performer always differ for a big movie and a small-scale film. For instance, Kuselan ran for 40 days in some theatres but was widely regarded as a failure. Whereas Vennila kabaddi kuzhu, which managed the same no. in one or two theatres was hailed as a success. Your comparison, therefore, simply does not hold water.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login