Jude Law Goes The Fugly Route & It’s Fugin’ Beautiful
Packing on body mass and mutton-chops, Law plays the titular safe-cracking geezer fresh off a 12 year prison stint, all the while keeping his trap shut about his boss. Now that he’s a free man, Dom wants all the booze, broads, and money owed to him. So far, so British.
For the majority of the movie, Law is so unLaw-like in his full tilt, full throttle, literally roaring force of nature, warts-and-all performance. Dom Hemingway isn’t the brightest bulb and his unrelenting booze/drug consumption fuels an ego that’s his own worst enemy. Dom Hemingway is the anti-Alfie.
There’s a subplot involving Dom’s estranged adult daughter, Evelyn (Emilia Clark) and her abanonment issues. Dom learns he’s a granddad. They do the whole awkard assimilation into one another’s lives again. All pretty standard stuff.
When Dom goes to a local pub to see Evelyn sing with her band, it’s the one scene in the movie where Dom doesn’t speak a single word, yet it’s the moment that reveals the man behind the bravado. It’s Dom as we’ve never seen him before and it’s damn near heartbreaking.
While standing at the bar and watching Evelyn sing a jaunty ditty, Jude Law barely moves a muscle, just stands there watching the band. As the camera does a slow push in, watch Law’s eyes melt into wells of woe that threaten to spill over. Law lets us past Dom’s boozy bravado as geezer gangster, to see a father realizing how much of his daughter’s life he’s missed and how years of his suppressed regret rise to the surface.
Out of nowhere, this scene – lasting roughly under a minute – showcases the best Jude Law has ever been. He does it without saying a word or moving a muscle, elevating acting as an art form and turns a simple moment into pure poetry.