Ripley's Game [DVD] 
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Three years after walking off with millions of dollars worth of forged Renaissance drawings, Tom Ripley (John Malkovich) has settled into a life of culture and opulence in Italy. One night however, Ripley finds his complacency disturbed when he overhears himself insulted by Jonathan Trevanny (Dougray Scott), a terminally ill ex-pat. While any ordinary sociopath might settle for a mild act of retribution, the game Ripley devises is far subtler and infinitely more sinister.
An unwelcome visit from a former criminal protégé offers Ripley his chance for revenge. Reeves (Ray Winstone) has eveolved from a small-time thug into a powerful underworld figure and has now come back to ask his one-time mentor for help. The Russian mafia is moving in on his turf in Berlin and Reeves needs someone completely unconnected with criminal circles to assassinate a brutal Moscow gang boss. Ripley declines to take on the job himself but suggests an ideal candidate: a dying man with little to lose and an urgent need to secure the financial security of his wife, Sarah (Lena Headley) and young son
Ripley's Game is a well-appointed star vehicle in which the slippery protagonist of The Talented Mr Ripley returns in another deadly guise. The star this time is John Malkovich, whose older Tom Ripley has settled into an Italian villa and a life of aesthetic contemplation (a little like Hannibal Lecter in Hannibal). A former partner (Ray Winstone) drags an innocent frame-maker (Dougray Scott), dying of leukaemia, into the role of unexpected hit man. Ripley, for his own enigmatic reasons, helps. Liliana Cavani, of The Night Porter notoriety, directed this handsome if nebulous film (which has no connection to the Matt Damon picture, other than a Patricia Highsmith source novel). Malkovich exudes his usual oily disenchantment with the world; Lena Headey, like the location footage, is gorgeous. The same novel was adapted in very different style by Wim Wenders for his brilliant 1977 film, The American Friend, with Dennis Hopper and Bruno Ganz. --Robert Horton
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Top Customer Reviews
I have been a fan of John Malkovich for a long time, having always admired his enchantingly smooth exterior and unforgettable face. All his attributes contribute flawlessly to give Tom Ripley a haunting and mysterious yet oddly likeable character.
The actual quality of filming is very high indeed, from the beautiful panaormic scenes of Ripley's home and grounds to the dark sinister and claustrophobic atmosphere of the express train.
To my mind this film is a hark back to the days of suspense and sinister film-making (think Hitchcock) which is certainly welcome in my view.
Definately a film to buy and treasure
Where Dennis Hopper's Ripley had told so many lies he had to constantly remind himself who he used to be, Malkovich's mature Ripley knows exactly who and what he is and, having come to terms with how morally and emotionally hollow he is, has come as close to what passes for contentment for him as he's likely to. You don't have the journey of self-discovery or the layers you get in Anthony Minghella's adaptation of The Talented Mr Ripley, but you do get one of the more convincing movie sociopaths - and one who feels like he's one of those higher beings you occasionally meet in all walks of life, only with better taste. When he talks about taking a human life having no more consequence than one less car on a busy road, it cuts to the sociopathic essence of Ripley.Read more ›
For some reason, Ripley's Game never got the theatrical release in the US it deserved, although it did do good business in Europe. Admittingly, the film lacks the star wattage of its predecessor, but it certainly makes up for this by finally giving us a "real" Ripley, a Ripley that we can care about, and also an actor who seems to fit the part. Malkovich plays him as a snaky, smooth, elegant and charming middle-aged man, a Machiavellian character who is always in the background deviously pulling the strings.
You can rest assured that this Ripley can kill a man without a moment's hesitation and then stop to admire an expensive statue before making his getaway or even send his girlfriend a beautiful bouquet of red roses. It's not just that this Ripley is a talented murderer - he can also deftly manipulate the innocent and cleverly handle public insults at a party - walking away, of course, with the upper hand.
Having made a fortune ripping off fine art, Ripley is now living the high-life in a stylish Italian manor with a beautiful young pianist for a wife (Chiara Caselli).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I expected more from Malkovich, but sadly it never came. Turned off after 20 mins.Published 26 days ago by Mr. Paul Watson
A rather quirky but cool understated thriller. Sound acting. A bit hammy in places, but overall intelligently directed. Pleasantly distracting and original settings.Published 27 days ago by JR
Was really looking forward to seeing this film again, unfortunately we got about half way through and the film stopped, we tried several times to restart it and skip through to the... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Austin Woodhouse
A good film. Mr Malkovich plays Ripley as he should be. Stone killer.Published 6 months ago by redman