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Little Odessa Movie Poster
Plot, Details & Awards

Little Odessa

Rated R for strong shootings, sexuality and language.

R In Theaters 05/19/1995 , 98min.
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Plot & Details

A somber portrait of organized crime and family trauma, Little Odessa centers on the trouble caused when hit man Joshua Shapira (Tim Roth) returns to his old neighborhood of Brighton Beach, Brooklyn. A hired killer for the Russian Mafia, Joshua is given an assignment in his hometown, where he renews contact with his younger brother Reuben (Edward Furlong) and an old flame (Moira Kelly). But others do not welcome Joshua's return, particularly his harsh, estranged father (Maximillian Schell), who had disowned Joshua years before and currently attempts to keep him from visiting his seriously ill mother (Vanessa Redgrave). The pressure of these family crises combine with Joshua's deepening involvement in the local crime scene, ultimately triggering a bloody confrontation. First-time director James Gray creates a solemn, oppressive atmosphere that emphasizes the already grim nature of his story. The slow pace and familiar crime narrative were attacked by many viewers, contributing to a mixed critical reaction, but Little Odessa nevertheless won admiration for Gray's visual sense and the skilled performance by Roth in the unsympathetic lead role.

Independent Spirit Awards

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
1995 Independent Spirit Awards Best First Screenplay James Gray Nominated
1995 Independent Spirit Awards Best Supporting Actress Vanessa Redgrave Nominated
1995 Independent Spirit Awards Best First Feature James Gray Nominated
1995 Independent Spirit Awards Best Actor Tim Roth Nominated
1995 Independent Spirit Awards Best Cinematography Tom Richmond Nominated

Venice International Film Festival

Year Award CategoryCast & Crew Result
1994 Venice International Film Festival Silver Lion James Gray Won
1994 Venice International Film Festival Volpi Cup for Best Supporting Actress Vanessa Redgrave Won

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