The family, its struggles and its entirety are the focus of the story. Millbrook, Indiana, and the Stall residence are the structure in which Tom establishes his identity. The mise en scne is alive with little embellishments that suggest good nature and an ingenuousness of being.
A History of Violence depicts the life of a small-town diner owner, Tom Stall (Viggo Mortensen), and his close-knit family of four. After defending their lives, killing two thugs during a robbery attempt, Tom becomes a local hero and, in turn, finds himself at the receiving end of some real trouble. The action is brutal, fast and sloppy but in many ways it gives the audience what they expect for the two wicked fellows.
Tom's newfound celebrity brings Philadelphia mobster Carl Fogarty (Ed Harris) to Millbrook insisting that Tom is actually a man named Joey Cusack who Fogarty clearly has some unfinished business with - bringing you to a dimension where sudden burst of extreme violence takes place out of domestic tranquility.
A History of Violence has an interesting technique. Most violent movies have a steady stream of violence spread throughout the film. Occasionally the violence will go over the top in an attempt to shock the audience, but the shock effect usually isn't strong. When the audience knows violence is coming, they can be somewhat prepared for it whether it is mild or extremely graphic.
Peter Suschitzky's cinematography is definitely the b...
Peter Suschitzky's cinematography is definitely the best. Colors come out rich and bright and brilliant; images are sharp, concise and clear, black's are dark and contrast comes out as it should; this is because Cronenberg and Director of Photography Peter Suschitzky have used a 27mm lens. A standard lens is 50mm focal length, so 27mm is very much a wide angle lens. To create 'normal' framings, the camera has to be placed closer and care is needed to avoid distortion. The effect is unnerving although a scene looks conventional, it feels wide of the mark
English Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby stereo soundtracks are presented. The 5.1 makes great use of the set up as needed. Music comes through in all speakers but doesn't overwhelm. Sound effects come through sharply as does the dialogue, mostly pumped through the center channel. There was no noticeable distortion anywhere. New Line has presented a fine audio mix to accompany a fine video transfer. Sound adds life to the story as to signify the intense feeling of the characters, and the extremes of every scene, especially the extremely distressing violence.
While it's just right, the film skillfully draws its audience into the graphic nature of violence and the way it later affects the film's protagonists. Some people might ignore the drama developed by Tom's actions, but Cronenberg handles the drama in such a way that is very effective; it doesn't come across as melodramatic. Everyone closely associated to Tom is changed or, at the very least, forced to look the consequences of their actions. The idea that violence breeds more violence and whether or not the vengeful and unforgiving instinct for destruction is imbedded in human DNA is in the heart of almost every scene. The