Murder, seduction and intrigue in the Kremlin! Written by Dennis Potter (Brimstone and Treacle), from a Martin Cruz Smith novel, Gorky Park is a gripping and brilliant classic! StarringWilliam Hurt, Lee Marvin, Brian Denne... more »hy, and Joanna Pacula, this "crisp intricate thriller" (TheNew York Times) takes you behind the iron curtain! When three murder victims are discovered in Moscow's Gorky Parktheir faces and fingertips removeddetective Arkady Renko (Hurt) isdetermined to identify the bodies and find the killer. But as a picture of the victims takes shape,the clues point toward involvement not only of the KGB but also of the woman he loves, Irina (Pacula). Now, hunted by the secret police and confronted by an intricate web of deception and treachery reaching to the highest political levels, Renko will stop at nothing to uncover the truth and bring the killer to justiceeven if it means guaranteeing his own destruction and losing Irina forever.« less
"A murder mistery . In the middle of Moscow . 3 people are killed . One of them is American . Life smart Russian detective trying to figure it out ... and catch another American ( in Moscow ). But later he found out , that this one - is a COP from New York , looking for killers of his brother . You get everything in here : exellent actors , a plot , a culmination , love story , KGB , Russian militsia , Moscow views , a good guys and the bad ones too . What else do you need ? A good director ? They got that !
Highly recomended ."
Murderer and Detective fight the coldest of wars
Rottenberg's rotten book review | nyc | 07/02/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Gorky Park" is based on the novel of the same name by Martin Cruz Smith. It's a flawed attempt, but otherwise excellent film. William Hurt plays the hero, Arkady "Arkasha" Renko, a righteous detective with the Moscow Militia, the Soviet capitol's local police force. His latest case involves three mutilated corpses discovered under a blanket of fresh snow in the woods of Gorky Park. Renko is barely on the scene when he's joined by KGB Col. Pribluda. "That could be you one day", the smiling killer tells Renko. With little doubt that the case "reeks of KGB" involvement, Renko at first seeks a way to dump the case, thinking it a trap laid against him by the KGB as revenge for Renko's earlier attempts to implicate the grinning KGB colonel in a multiple homicide. A dogged persistance won't let him drop the case, and he pursues leads that have nothing to do with the KGB - including a one-time student dissident (Joanna Pacula) whose name is scratched into the skates worn by one of the corpses, and Jack Osborne (Lee Marvin), a wealthy American tycoon with an interest in genuine Russian Sables. Soon, however, Renko finds himself the prey, when a mysterious American, who turns out to be a NYPD Detective (Brian Dennehy), arrives on the scene, convinced that his younger brother may be one of the victims and Renko one of his executioners. Unclear who he has to fear, especially when his men and his witnesses begin dying, and unsure who to trust, Renko goes practically underground, the American Detective his only real ally.Flawed by a script that ambitiously tries to comprise all of Smith's multi-layered plot, "Park" makes a great go of it. With the help of the late and great Dennis Potter ("the Singing Detective", "Pennies from Heaven"), Michael Apted's superb cast goes a long way to realizing author Smith's vision. There is the amiably amoral Pribluda and Dennehy as the brutish Detective Kerwill. Joanna Paculla will break your heart while Lee Marvin is cheery as the rich American who smoothly reaffirms the Soviets' faith in the evil that is the United States. Hurt's duel of wits with Marvin (Renko wastes little time making the rich American a prime suspect) provides the most tension of the film. Renko tries to elicit Osbourne's response by comparing the murder of the faceless trio with the American's favorite hobby - a hunt for Sable. Their exchanges are key because they highlight Osbourne's amorality and his mastery over Renko and the systemic rot of the Soviet hierarchy. Even minor charachters like Alexi Sayle as Fedor Golodkin and Ian Mcdiarmid as Prof. Andreev are hard to forget. Golodkin is the cheerily slimy smuggler who informs on Pacula's charachter for the KGB while Andreev, a dry academician with no time for police forensics, reluctantly agrees to reconstruct identities of mutilitated corpses. Mcdarmid, for his screen time is also fun, especially when meeting Renko and the detective's high-mindedness for the first time. "I fear that you are not long for this world, my friend", the dry academician tells Renko, evoking the same foreboding Macdarmid displayed as Darth Vader's boss in "Return of the Jedi". I caught a TV cut of the film and the editing was horrible. Don't settle for the Bravo version - get this tape today."
First Rate, Bittersweet, Effective
C. O. DeRiemer | San Antonio, Texas, USA | 10/18/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"It's winter and three corpses are found in Moscow's Gorky Park. They've had their faces and finger tips carved off. Arkady Renko, an honest, slightly obsessive Russian cop, is assigned to the case. He sets out to identify the bodies by reconstructing their faces, and as he gets closer he finds obstructions in his path. He finds a girl (Joanna Pacula) who was friends of the trio, a wealthy and ruthless American (Lee Marvin), an American cop (Brian Dennehy) out for blood, and more than he probably wants to know about sable coats and the animals they're made from. It becomes clear that corrupt higher-ups are involved in something with greater stakes than solving a triple murder. Hurt and Marvin do great jobs and are well matched.
This is a tight, very well constructed police procedural that is a little exotic, with the cops and functionaries being Russians. It's also a bit gloomy with a bittersweet ending, but it still works as a very watchable film. A lot of the outdoor shots were filmed in Helsinki, and the movie takes place in the winter. The atmosphere looks cold and oppressive. The contrast is striking with the scenes set in a pre-revolutionary bath and an expensive restaurant, both reserved for the use of privileged Soviet officials.
The book, by Martin Cruz Smith, is even better. Apted also directed Enigma, and I like both movies a lot."
Very good movie
kellyke | Roselle, IL | 04/14/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I've read the book and although it, of course, was much better, I enjoyed the movie. I regret that the movie leaves out a large section at the end of the book that I particularly liked. Additionally, the movie misrepresents my favorite character, namely KGB Major Pribluda. On the flip side, William Hurt is very good as Arkady. Lee Marvin well portrays the slimy sable-selling American Jack Osbourne, and Brian Dennerhy does well as a rogue New York City cop who doesn't give a damn about getting killed or killing people, as long as he can avenge his brother. I really enjoyed this film. Oh- the DVD especially is good, because in the movie it is difficult to make out what is happening in some of the darker scenes."
kellyke | 03/17/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Forget the Amazon review, this is one of those rare cases in which the movie is actually better than book (it eschews the books unbelievable ending, replacing it with one that is far more plausible). A stellar cast and the great Lee Marvin's last movie, terrific acting and fine direction, what more do you need."