‘Sexed-up’ J Law heats up polarizing espionage thriller
Even with its nudity and wince-inducing gore, Francis Lawrence’s “Red Sparrow” doesn’t always work—but, it has no difficulty holding viewers’ attention.
Moreover, there’s something about the “sexed-up” Jennifer Lawrence (as tragic ballerina-turned-hardened spy Dominika Egorova) and her formidable thespic cohorts—Matthias Schoenaerts, Charlotte Rampling, Jeremy Irons, Mary-Louise Parker—that allows the production to transcend its doom-and-gloom grit and creepy cynicism, and turns it into a viewable espionage drama.
Joel Edgerton is miscast in the role of Nate Nash, the idealistic CIA agent who helps Dominika turn the tables on her remorseless tormentors. He works hard to keep storytelling ennui at bay, but is no match for his lovely costar’s scorching, sizzling presence.