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In Bruges - Colin Farrell, Ralph Fiennes, Brendan Gleeson, Martin McDonagh

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

Shoot first. Sightsee later.

Bruges, the most well-preserved medieval city in the whole of Belgium, is a welcoming destination for travellers from all over the world. But for hit-men Ray (Colin Farrell) and Ken (Brendan Gleeson), it could be their final destination; a difficult job has resulted in the pair being ordered right before Christmas by their London boss Harry (Ralph Fiennes) to go and cool their heels in the storybook Flemish city for a couple of weeks.

Very much out of place amidst the gothic architecture, canals, and cobbled streets, the two hit men fill their days living the lives of tourists. Ray, still haunted by the bloodshed in London, hates the place, while Ken, even as he keeps a fatherly eye on Ray's often profanely funny exploits, finds his mind and soul being expanded by the beauty and serenity of the city.

But the longer they stay waiting for Harry's call, the more surreal their experience becomes, as they find themselves in weird encounters with locals, tourists, violent medieval art, a dwarf American actor (Jordan Prentice) shooting a European art film, Dutch prostitutes, and a potential romance for Ray in the form of Chloë (Clémence Poésy), who may have some dark secrets of her own.

And when the call from Harry does finally come, Ken and Ray's vacation becomes a life-and-death struggle of darkly comic proportions and surprisingly emotional consequences.

Theatrical propaganda posters

In Bruges theatrical one sheet imageIn Bruges theatrical one sheet image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film action comedy crime Belgium assassin hit-man holiday tourist black comedy murder

Persons of interest

  • Elizabeth Berrington .... Natalie
  • Colin Farrell .... Ray
  • Ralph Fiennes .... Harry
  • Brendan Gleeson .... Ken
  • Eric Godon .... Yuri
  • Sachi Kimura .... Imamoto
  • Anna Madeley .... Denise
  • Clémence Poésy .... Chloë
  • Jordan Prentice .... Jimmy
  • Jérémie Renier .... Eirik
  • Thekla Reuten .... Marie
  • Inez Stinton .... Kelli
  • Martin McDonagh .... Screenwriter
  • Martin McDonagh .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Ha! Ha! Ha! What a hoot! In Bruges is a hilariously black film that aims for the intellectual end of the crime comedy market and hits it right between the eyes. It is a cult classic with great performances by Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson as a couple of Irish gangsters, forcing a bravura climax from Ralph Fiennes who can usually be relied upon to coast through on his accent.

Bruges itself is lovely but it really is the kind of place out of which you have to take the piss or be in danger of slashing your wrists.

Despite not being particularly surprising on the death front (everyone gets their just deserts), In Bruges still manages some hilarious twists (I won't spoil them for you: they're the type that you can see on the horizon then enjoy as they get closer and closer). This is an intelligent gangster murder film, somewhat more upmarket than, say, Lock, stock and two smoking barrels, with more introspection than violence. I'm actually considering watching this movie twice.

The action, comedy, crime movie In Bruges is directed by Martin McDonagh and stars Colin Farrell, Ralph Fiennes, Brendan Gleeson.

Government security censorship classification

MA 15+ (Strong violence, coarse language and drug use)

Surveillance time

108 minutes (1:48 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 4 September 2008

Cinema surveillance images

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