A couple of weeks ago internet blew up when a photo of Red Sparrow’s cast got uploaded. Showing star Jennifer Lawrence alongside Joel Edgerton, Jeremy Irons and Matthias Schoenaerts. What was the fuzz about? While her male co-stars where all cozy in their winter clothes she used a Versace dress that didn’t seem do much to keep London’s cold away. And –rather obviously- Internet had a lot of things to say about it. Even though the argument was shut down by Lawrence herself, it works as a prelude about the film itself: women’s strength. “Here I am and I won’t let something as insignificant as the weather tell me what to wear”. Almost as if it was a line from Dominika Egorova, the Russian former ballet dancer turned into a spy.
Red Sparrow’s premise could be considered controversial at best –and even suited for an adult film-: Sexy Russian spies using sex as a weapon to steal state secrets. But if you are starting to think we have some kind of Jane Bond flick here you would be wrong. The plot, the espionage, the action, everything ends up set aside in front of Lawrence’s outstanding performance, who embodies the spirit of women’s unbreakable determination, but without the cliché of being impervious to everything that happens around her. Her strength is shown trough her struggle. Each step shaping her character as she tries to define herself and strive for freedom under a rather oppressive regime.
Overcoming betrayal, torture –both physical as psychological-, rape attempts and bullets, Lawrence travels a path that would break anyone’s will. The fight for survival and the uprising of her inner strength are palpable through-out the film’s duration. “Here I am and I won’t let something as insignificant as the weather tell me what to wear” say’s Lawrence in her cast photo and also in this new production that breaks the simple “espionage cliché” to become a showing of female strength and endurance.