Road to Perdition (2002) Review


When Michael Sullivan Jr witnesses a murder he ends up on the road with his mob father Michael Sullivan. This was never going to be easy and they are pushed to the limits.


Road to Perdition is a truly powerful film set in 1931 during the Great Depression and focuses on Michael Sullivan who is an enforcer in the Irish mob for boss John Rooney, the man who raised him due to being an orphan. John’s love for Michael is greater than that of his biological son Connor and this certainly causes so many issues. This will then force the series of events that lead to Michael and his son having to leave their home.

Battling to stay alive Michael Jr is about to witness many sides to his father that he has no idea actually exists. Connor’s jealously will see him fight for his fathers attention and love in the wrong way. This results in him killing Michael’s wife and youngest son. He then goes into hiding and as Michael battles to survive attending meetings with other men in an attempt to still make money.

Harlen Maguire a crime scene photographer and assassin is sent after Sullivan and this creates a bit of chase involved in the story. It certainly makes for some rather impressive scenes and wondering if he will manage to catch them. The scenes between Sullivan and John Rooney really are impressive and we would not really expect anything less from Tom Hanks and Paul Newman sharing the screen would we?

This leads very nicely into the performances and obviously Tom Hanks leads the film in a fantastic manner and that allows Tyler Hoechlin to also put in an amazing performance for someone so young. Then we add in Paul Newman the legend that is very much a scene stealer and it is very easy to see how and why he was nominated in a supporting role for this film, which as it turns out was his only supporting nomination his other seven were as a leading actor. I guess it was therefore fitting when this was his last live action performance. Daniel Craig is Connor and this allows him to be the spoilt child of Rooney and he is given some very interesting and good scenes. Jude Law is decent as well as Harlen Maguire in the chase. I also feel that I need to mention Stanley Tucci as well even though his role is very small I still thought he was very good.

The film is based on a graphic novel which I am assuming many people won’t really notice, as I would never have really thought that. I tend to link them with Sin City and films that are done in that manner. Something that was extremely impressive was the score, it fits in magically within the film and creates that extra edge. It is not a massively dialogue heavy film but I feel that makes it even more powerful as some of the lines then blow you away, the biggest one for me is from Paul Newman with “There are only murderers in this room! Michael! Open your eyes! This is the life we chose, the life we lead. And there is only one guarantee: none of us will see heaven.”

3 thoughts on “Road to Perdition (2002) Review

  1. What? 2002? Its been eighteen years since I first saw this at the cinema? Its scary, these days, realising how ‘old’ films really are that still feel recent. Mind, sometimes thinking back to watching Blade Runner in 1982, it feels like yesterday but its getting close to 38 years ago now. Maybe you get to a point as a movie-lover that you just have to stop, its like Father Time is always tapping you on the shoulder with that guy holding the scythe standing just behind him. Well, that’s a cheery thought, sorry about that!

    Liked by 1 person

    • No problem, it’s all such a good point we lose track of time with films. I find it strange that I can remember who I saw films at the cinema with, although in recent years I am usually alone.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.