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Birthday Girl

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R
2001

Birthday Girl is a 2001 thriller film directed by Jez Butterworth, starring Nicole Kidman, Vincent Cassel, and Ben Chaplin. The film revolves around a lonely bank clerk named John Buckingham, who one day decides to order a Russian mail-order bride named Nadia over the internet. However, things take a dangerous turn when Nadia's two "cousins" arrive from Russia to visit her, and John's life becomes entangled in a web of danger, deception, and crime.

The movie starts with showing John's lonely and mundane life in London as a bank clerk. He decides to take a chance and orders a mail-order bride from Russia, hoping to find some excitement in his life. He chooses Nadia from a catalog of women online, and soon after, she arrives at his doorstep in London. John's excitement turns into disappointment when he discovers that Nadia does not speak English, and the two struggle to communicate initially.

However, things take a dark turn in the story as two men, Alexei and Yuri, both claiming to be Nadia's cousins, arrive at John's doorstep unexpectedly. John is initially hesitant to invite them in, but Nadia insists on letting them stay, and the four of them begin to spend time together. The new arrivals' presence in John's life is unsettling, and soon enough, John realizes that these two strangers are not who they claim to be.

As the movie progresses, the viewer is taken on a thrilling ride as John's relationships with Nadia, Alexei, and Yuri become more complicated. Nadia's past life in Moscow is brought to the surface, and John realizes that he has got himself caught in a dangerous and criminal world that he knows nothing about. He attempts to untangle himself from the mess he's gotten into while also trying to protect Nadia from her dangerous "cousins".

Nicole Kidman delivers an excellent performance as Nadia, the Russian bride who is both alluring and enigmatic. Kidman's portrayal of Nadia is one of the highlights of the movie, and she adds depth and complexity to her character, making her more than just a stereotypical Russian mail-order bride. Vincent Cassel is brilliant as Alexei, the charming and menacing Semitic character, who can be equally seductive and menacing at the same time. Ben Chaplin also delivers a fine performance as John Buckingham, the shy bank clerk who gets pulled into a web of danger and intrigue.

The script of the movie is intriguing and keeps the viewer interested until the very end, although it lags a bit in the middle. The first half of the movie establishes the characters and their relationships, while the second half dives into the thriller aspect, with twists and turns that keep the viewer guessing. The soundtrack of the movie is also excellent, setting the tone for the movie's gritty and ominous atmosphere.

In conclusion, Birthday Girl is a solid thriller that offers an interesting premise and engaging performances by its cast. The film offers a fresh take on the "mail-order bride" trope, and the characters are complex and well-written. The pacing of the movie could have been better, but the script makes up for it with its twists and turns. If you're a fan of thrillers and crime dramas, then Birthday Girl should certainly be on your list of movies to watch.

Birthday Girl is a Comedy, Crime, Thriller movie released in 2001. It has a runtime of 93 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 6.0. It also holds a MetaScore of 51.

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Where can I stream Birthday Girl movie online? Birthday Girl is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Pluto TV, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Birthday Girl for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

6.0/10
51/100
Director
Jez Butterworth
Stars
Nicole Kidman, Ben Chaplin
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