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Little Odessa 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. ~ Judd Blaise, Rovi

  • Release date:May 19, 1995


Awarded by
Independent Spirit Awards Tim Roth Best Actor 1995 Nominee
Independent Spirit Awards Tom Richmond Best Cinematography 1995 Nominee
Venice International Film Festival Vanessa Redgrave Volpi Cup for Best Supporting Actress 1994 Winner
Independent Spirit Awards Vanessa Redgrave Best Supporting Actress 1995 Nominee
Venice International Film Festival James Gray Silver Lion 1994 Winner
Independent Spirit Awards James Gray Best First Feature 1995 Nominee
Independent Spirit Awards James Gray Best First Screenplay 1995 Nominee


Tim Roth
as Joshua Shapira
Edward Furlong
as Reuben Shapira
Moira Kelly
as Alla Shustervich
Vanessa Redgrave
as Irina Shapira
Maximilian Schell
as Arkady Shapira
Paul Guilfoyle
as Boris Volkoff
Natalya Andreichenko
as Natasha
David Vadim
as Sasha
Mina Bern
as Grandma Tsilya
Ron Brice
as Man with one leg
Mina Bern
as Grandma Tsilya


James Gray
Paul Webster
James Gray
Tom Richmond
Dana Sano
Composer (Music Score)
Tom Paul
Musical Direction/Supervision
Dorian Harris
Kevin Thompson
Production Designer
Judy Rhee
Art Director
Kerry Orent
Rolf Mittweg
Executive Producer
Claudia Lewis
Executive Producer
Nick Wechsler
Executive Producer
Charles Ford
Set Designer
Michael Clancy
Costume Designer
Steve Apicella
First Assistant Director
Christopher Goode
Production Manager
Douglas Aibel