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      Essential Killing

      R 2010 1 hr. 24 min. Mystery & Thriller War List
      77% 53 Reviews Tomatometer 46% 2,500+ Ratings Audience Score A Taliban soldier (Vincent Gallo) struggles to survive after he escapes his captors and flees into the Polish countryside. Read More Read Less Watch on Peacock Stream Now

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      Essential Killing

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      Essential Killing

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      Critics Consensus

      Driven by a uniquely stark mood and propulsive direction, Essential Killing excels due to an unrelentingly visceral performance from Vincent Gallo.

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      Audience Reviews

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      Audience Member Only 83 minutes!...It seemed like 83 hours. Rated 1.5 out of 5 stars 02/14/23 Full Review Audience Member Jerzy Skolimowski's survival tale benefits from a steady, muted performance by VIncent Gallo. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/27/23 Full Review Audience Member The story of survival of a man from, what we presume, Afghanistan lost in the middle of the taïga of Siberia. Not a killer by choice, a killer for survival, for the essential. Vincent Gallo is truly a good actor, it is too bad we don't see him enough. Not a must see but a good film. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/18/23 Full Review Audience Member As purely a visceral thriller it goes well at first but tapers off a bit ineffectually, and the lack of context switches from being a strength, to joining the budget as a limitation. Instead of building some sort of narrative, you flounder around making wilder and ever weaker guesses, until you give up and wait powerless for the inevitable. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/20/23 Full Review Audience Member Beautiful scenery and I liked the sound effects/texture especially all the small sounds like snow crunching. Made me think about the war on terror from another perspective for a minute. I liked how we got to see everything from this characters POV and came to empathize for him a bit (though I was never routing for him). Makes you wonder about how you might deal with that. I don't know how I would have made out after the messing up my foot. Loved the lack of dialogue Rated 4 out of 5 stars 01/15/23 Full Review Audience Member A good film that gives you the first part excitements and ends with scenes of silence while the protagonist struggles. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/17/23 Full Review Read all reviews Post a rating

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      Critics Reviews

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      Ben Sachs Chicago Reader It's great screen acting, as [Vincent] Gallo expressively uses his body to make it part of the film's overall design. May 5, 2020 Full Review Scott Tobias AV Club Essential Killing goes so far out of its way to avoid political commentary that the commentary that remains is slim, reduced to a familiar, though occasionally striking, statement on man's animal nature. Rated: B- May 5, 2020 Full Review Tara Brady Irish Times The religious-themed inserts are incongruous in a project that so studiously sidesteps political markers and prove an unwanted distraction in the cinema. May 5, 2020 Full Review Giuseppe Sedia Kino Mania Skolimowski succeeds in directing a minimalistic escape movie that enhances the physical performance of a wonderfully unrecognizable Vincent Gallo as the Taliban runaway [about] the many-sided taboo of Polish politics and the CIA’s covert operations. Rated: 4.5/5 Aug 10, 2023 Full Review Paul Whitington Irish Independent Once [Jerzy] Skolimowski has established his story's visual momentum, it goes precisely nowhere. Rated: 3/5 May 5, 2020 Full Review Allan Hunter Daily Express (UK) Tightly controlled by veteran director Jerzy Skolimowski and beautifully shot on location in Israel and Poland, Essential Killing is an exciting if wildly implausible fable. Rated: 3/5 May 5, 2020 Full Review Read all reviews

      Movie Info

      Synopsis A Taliban soldier (Vincent Gallo) struggles to survive after he escapes his captors and flees into the Polish countryside.
      Jerzy Skolimowski
      Executive Producer
      Andrew Lowe, Jeremy Thomas
      Jerzy Skolimowski, Ewa Piaskowska
      Production Co
      Skopia Film, Element Pictures, Cylinder Production
      Mystery & Thriller, War
      Original Language
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Jul 23, 2012
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