The Russia House (1990)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB

USA, 1990.  , , . Screenplay by , based on the novel by . Cinematography by .  Produced by , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

Sean Connery plays a British professor who is also a Russophile and lives in the U.S.S.R. because of how much he loves the culture. When the friend of a Russian spy (Michelle Pfeiffer) hands secret information over to the British government, they in turn ask Connery to investigate the nature of the material to see if it is genuine or not.  Soon the game becomes deadly for him and Pfeiffer, and the movie itself becomes deadly for the audience because it’s just so boring. I suppose it should be considered tasteful, literate filmmaking for the intellectually superior, but I think even the most pretentious brainiac will get tired of the colourless sets and uneventful dialogue and just switch it off. Connery is his usual smugly self-confident self, while Pfeiffer shines as the inexperienced operative (she later wondered if she would ever be allowed to make a film with a male co-star half her age when she was in her sixties…I’d say Cheri and I Could Never Be Your Woman were valiant attempts).

Berlin Film Festival Award:  In Competition

Golden Globe Award Nomination:  Best Actress-Drama (Michelle Pfeiffer)

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