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Road to Perdition Plot Point *** SPOILER ALERT ***

Old 05-19-05, 01:13 PM
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Road to Perdition Plot Point *** SPOILER ALERT ***

Please don't read this thread if you haven't already seen the movie Road to Perdition!

***** SPOILER ALERT *****
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Last night I watched Road to Perdition for the first time. I thought the vast majority of the movie was very well done... the acting, the music, the cinematography, etc. But there is one MAJOR plot point that in my opinion is absolutely inconceivable - that I just can't get over and greatly diminishes my enjoyment of the movie. Perhaps I missed something and someone here can explain it to me.

Why doesn't Tom Hanks 'finish off' (kill), Jude Law when they have the shootout in the hotel room (NOT the beachhouse)? It seems absolutely incomprehensible that a highly regarded and seasoned hitman would make this mistake. Hell, I can't even envision a first-time hitman making this mistake! It's not like the police were bearing down on Hanks and he didn't have the 3 seconds necessary to finish the job. He also would have to know that if Jude Law survived he would pursue Hanks after his recovery.

Somebody please tell me that I missed something obvious and explain it to me, so I can enjoy this movie a whole lot more. Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-19-05, 03:08 PM
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He was out of bullets.
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Old 05-19-05, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Superboy
He was out of bullets.
Serious? Or are you joking?

Even if Hanks was out of bullets, he could have smashed Jude Law's skull with any one of a dozen different items in the room. Or even shot Law with Law's own gun.
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Old 05-19-05, 03:39 PM
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There are hundreds of movies that raise the same question; why didn't the killer just finish them off when he had the chance? You must get furious when you watch any of the James Bond films.
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Old 05-19-05, 03:52 PM
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He thought he was dead. Getting shot in the face is not something most people survive of, especially in the 1930s.
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Old 05-19-05, 03:57 PM
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Instead of asking yourself why a character doesn't act according to your expectations, try asking 'What do this character's actions reveal about him/her?'

Saves a lot of frustration, and in some cases can actually enrich the filmgoing experience.
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Old 05-19-05, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by FinkPish
You must get furious when you watch any of the James Bond films.
No, the James Bond films are fantasy-action movies and don't ask to be taken anywhere near as seriously as Road to Perdition.

Edit: I'm not in any way 'furious'. There is no malice intended in my post. I'm simply trying to understand why Hanks' character would act in that way.

Last edited by Al_Tahoe; 05-19-05 at 04:22 PM.
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Old 05-19-05, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by sundog
try asking 'What do this character's actions reveal about him/her?'
Enlighten me. What did his actions at that particular moment reveal about him?

Last edited by Al_Tahoe; 05-19-05 at 04:34 PM.
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Old 05-19-05, 04:13 PM
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Hell if I know. I barely remember the movie, just wandered in here.

And besides, the viewpoint I described is for the forming of personal opinions.

Granted, in many cases, this method is just as transparent as the plotpoints we quibble over, but we do what we can . . .
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Old 05-19-05, 04:38 PM
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Okay okay. The real reason Tom Hanks' character did not kill Jude Law's character in the hotel is:

so Jude Law can kill Tom Hanks at the end (or whatever, I forget what happened) and everything becomes meaningful and oh so deep . . .
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Old 05-19-05, 10:09 PM
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Originally Posted by sundog
Okay okay. The real reason Tom Hanks' character did not kill Jude Law's character in the hotel is:

so Jude Law can kill Tom Hanks at the end (or whatever, I forget what happened) and everything becomes meaningful and oh so deep . . .
Yes, that's about the only 'explanation' I could come up with myself. But I was hoping there was actually a 'better' reason than that.
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Old 05-20-05, 04:05 AM
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they were in the midst of robbing banks and with all the noise the cops would be coming soon. He probably assumed he would die of blood loss when he left.
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Old 05-20-05, 07:15 AM
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Have you actually looked at Jude Law's face? Do you understand how handsome he is? Why would anyone want to shoot him?

Geez.
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Old 05-20-05, 08:03 AM
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Small potatoes make the steak look bigger.

Bus, are you speaking from personal experience?
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Old 05-20-05, 02:22 PM
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I don't remeber the scene with perfect clarity but I think that it has something to do with what hitmen really are. Hitmen aren't people that face you in a stand up fight. They generally like to kill you from behind or with some suprise. In the scene that you are talking about, Jude came into the room on the attack and Tom was on the defense. He was moving from position to postion and even into other rooms. When he wounded Jude, he wouldn't have known how seriously he was hurt and so probably wouldn't have approached him to finish him off. In that kind of situation, it is probably better to get away from the scene and maybe try to kill the guy at a time when he is not expecting an attack.

As to why Hanks was killed in the end, when he was finished killing his wifes murderer, he was under the impression that there was no longer a "hit" out on him so he didn't have to find and kill Jude.

My question is, was Jude still on the clock when he killed Tom or was it personal by that point and he just killed him even after he had been told that it was over but the Mob?
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Old 05-20-05, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by MScottM
My question is, was Jude still on the clock when he killed Tom or was it personal by that point and he just killed him even after he had been told that it was over but the Mob?
My understanding is that the entire event ended after Hanks killed Connor Looney. During the phone conversation Nitti says something like this (paraphrased) "after this, it's over," and then gives Hanks the hotel room number. Sullivan probably assumed that he wouldn't have to deal with Maguire again. Maguire was probably pretty pissed after getting shot in the face with lamp pieces and wanted some revenge, even if the hit was called off.
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Old 05-22-05, 05:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Al_Tahoe
Please don't read this thread if you haven't already seen the movie Road to Perdition!

***** SPOILER ALERT *****
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Why doesn't Tom Hanks 'finish off' (kill), Jude Law when they have the shootout in the hotel room?
You want to kill somebody and all you can get is Jude Law? You wait!
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Old 05-23-05, 10:41 PM
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Originally Posted by TheNightFlier
My understanding is that the entire event ended after Hanks killed Connor Looney. During the phone conversation Nitti says something like this (paraphrased) "after this, it's over," and then gives Hanks the hotel room number. Sullivan probably assumed that he wouldn't have to deal with Maguire again. Maguire was probably pretty pissed after getting shot in the face with lamp pieces and wanted some revenge, even if the hit was called off.
I forgot about that part but my understanding is that when he says 'it's over,' he meant he wants him to stop robbing all their banks. I think he kills Newman and co. afterwards so they dont bother him either. Nitti may have forgotten, or didnt care to, call off the hit, or Maguire was paid already so he wanted to kill him anyway. It's anyone's guess. Havent heard the commentary yet so wouldnt know if it's mentioned
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Old 05-24-05, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Perkinsun Dzees
You want to kill somebody and all you can get is Jude Law? You wait!
LOL!
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