Bronson: Movie Review
Cast: Tom Hardy, James Lance, Amanda Burton
Director: Nicolas Winding Refn
Tom Hardy (TV ONE's Sunday Theatre The Take, Rocknrolla) stars as Charles
Bronson, the man dubbed the most notorious UK inmate, in this biographical take
on his life and times.
The story is told in a rather unusual and visually captivating way - in front
of an audience, Bronson tells us he always wanted to be famous; with his bald
head, polished dome and large handlebar moustache, he cuts a comical figure;
almost clown-like in his mannerisms and speech - but heaven help you if you
mock him - because there's also an explosion of violence around the corner.
And it's merely minutes before the fighting begins; Refn cuts directly back
and forth from Bronson's speech on the stage to his taking on a series of guards
and battering them black and blue.
Cutting back to his (brief) life before prison, we learn a little more about
Michael Peterson aka Charles Bronson - but quite frankly it appears a life of
petty crime was only the precursor to a blooming time in jail which sees him
thrive; Bronson becomes a star taking on the guards and starts to believe his
However, Bronson the film is a savage assault on the senses - thanks to the
stunning and towering performance from Hardy himself; while Bronson's never
going to be a likeable character, it's Hardy's performance which makes him so
compelling to watch.
There's some great visual touches and an extension of the performance of a
clown sees Bronson at his peak - Hardy's mesmerizing turn never sees you off
guard; you're 100% sure of his propensity for explosive violence but yet you
can't help but watch this portrayal.
Bronson may be a difficult film for some to watch; it's violent and shows no
sign that this prisoner can be rehabilitated - but thanks to Tom Hardy's acting
and some visually curious moments, it remains a film which will haunt you over
you've seen it.