dir. Nicolas Winding Refn

Series - Twitch Film Feature Series

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Tom Hardy (Inception, The Dark Knight Rises) gives a bravura, full-tilt performance in the title role of Nicolas Winding Refn's stylized biopic of Michael Peterson, a.k.a. Charles Bronson, infamous as "The Most Violent Prisoner in Britain."

Winding Refn made his second English-language feature after the disastrous Fear X with this bruising biopic of infamous British convict Michael Peterson — better known by his "fighting name," Charles Bronson — who has spent nearly his entire life in prison (and over thirty years in solitary confinement) for his gleeful, headline-grabbing violence against guards, fellow cons, and anybody unlucky enough to get within his reach. As stylishly nasty as any of the director's films, Bronson is also Winding Refn's most intriguing fusion of exploitation-flick content and art-house technique, as our hulking, mustachioed and bullet-headed anti-hero narrates his own story via outlandishly Brechtian straight-to-camera address. A near-perfect collision of form and content, replete with some of Winding Refn's most brilliant stylistic flourishes — particularly the brutal opening sequence scored to Scott Walker's eerie "The Electrician" and the bonkers, Magritte-quoting finale — Bronson also features a magnetic performance by Tom Hardy, who plays the title role to the hilt and then some.