Mr. Hardy has a lovely cackle, which he uses often throughout the film -- when he is not using his fists, that is. Which is most of the time. We see his early life, adolescence and young manhood in bits and pieces, from which we learn that he has a severe behavioral problem. This gets worse. The poor guy just can't seem to help beating the shit out of the police, prison guards and anyone who gets in his way. Why? Your guess is as good as mine -- or that of everyone else involved in the film, including Mr Refn (pictured above), all of who seem to have devoted about a mini-second of time to this question. More than anything else, Bronson reminded me of Eric Bana's early film Chopper, but the former is as stylized as the latter is realistic.
acter. All along the way, there has been no apparent attempt by anyone -- parents, police, friends, the man himself and certainly not Mr, Refn -- to even begin to figure this guy out. Even if the mystery of a man like Bronson is that he is unfathomable, we ought to at least see someone try to figure him out. Instead we get histrionics, operatics and music -- oh, that music -- and colors and lights. And fights. The end result? A very classy exploitation movie, one that, were it Australian, might have been included in the delightful documentary just released this week to DVD, Not Quite Hollywood. Mr. Hardy is terrific (look at that grin below) and Bronson is dumb fun -- but it's also very nearly meaningless.