The first time I saw Tom Hardy was watching him play Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights on Amazon Prime: http://amzn.to/1oQsYmo. I absolutely loved him in this role. I thought he was sexy and dark. Quiet yet capable of anything.
The next time I saw him was the other night in Mad Max. He nailed the part of playing a post-apocalyptic captive too.
Now, after watching him star as Bob Saginowski, a lonely Brooklyn bartender, I truly believe this man can transform into anyone.
Bob is understated. Simple. He serves drinks to his tight-knit community along with his cousin Marv (Gandolfini), who used to own the bar until it was acquired by the Chechen mafia. Despite the gangs and violence going on around him, Bob is a man who goes to church. And he doesn’t consider himself to be ‘one of them.’
Walking home one night, he hears some whimpering coming from a trashcan behind one of the chain link fences. Leaning over to lift the lid, he finds an adorable puppy inside, the poor little thing all bloody and abused. When he opens the gate to get to the trashcan, a nervous woman steps out from her house to see what’s going on. Nadia eventually lets the two inside and they clean the puppy up. That night a slow, broken love story begins that gives me this Rocky Balboa/Adrian/pet store vibe that I really enjoyed.
After Cousin Marv’s bar is hit with a robbery, things get brutal pretty fast. A warning for the squeamish, the mafia doesn’t seem to care too much about body parts and blood. And you’ll worry about the well-being of that little pit bull the entire time.
Based on a short story called “Animal Rescue” and eventually written into a novel, this movie is full of twists and surprises. As the story moves on, you see hints that Bob might not be so simple after all. His character is honest, a bit self-righteous and very well played. Although the story finishes off a little dark, it still offers up a happy ending.
This movie might not be 5 stars for me, but I really enjoyed it and can’t wait to see what Tom Hardy gets himself into next!