Danger, deception, and murder descend upon a sleepy country town when a professional assassin (Anson Mount) accepts a new assignment from his enigmatic mentor and boss (Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins). Given only where and when along with a cryptic clue, the methodical hitman must identify his mysterious mark from among several possible targets, including a local sheriff (David Morse). Meanwhile, a chance encounter with an alluring woman (Abbie Cornish) at the town’s rustic diner threatens to derail his mission in this noir-style cloak-and-dagger thriller.
The Virtuoso is a modern-day film noir, filled with intricacy and ambiguity. A visceral thrill ride with something to say. It contains everything I love in a movie. There is cinematic style to burn: bold visuals, muted colors, strong performances, dynamic compositions, and Hitchcockian suspense mixed with Peckinpah violence. But it’s also filled with compelling and unconventional characters. A clever and gripping story told in an unorthodox manner. And a riveting plot filled with moral dilemmas and heartbreaking realities.
On a deeper level, the film explores universal themes of identity, guilt, and redemption. It examines the fine line between appearance versus reality and fate versus free will… and the horrific cost of them all. As timely today as when the genre was at its peak in the late Forties and Fifties, I want THE VIRTUOSO to be a cinematic hammer to the head and the heart. Filled with jaw-dropping violence, nail-biting suspense, and dazzling style.
The Virtuoso observes the interaction of three symbolic leads – “the Virtuoso”, “the Waitress” and “the Mentor” – who respectively represent the tragic hero, the femme fatale and the deus ex machina of classic drama. “The Virtuoso” is the strong, silent cowboy, a lost soul who finds his calling ultimately through what he does best – kill people, seeking to interpret the ambiguities of the world he encounters. “The Waitress” is a good woman, just trying to get by in her rather bland existence, searching for her ticket to a better life – or is she? And “the Mentor” is that ever lurking power who lords over the world around him, making life and death decisions with the blink of an eye.
The Virtuoso will be released OnDemand and BluRay on May 4th, 2021.