Violet & Daisy tells the story of two teenage hired hit girls in New York City. Daisy (Saoirse Ronan) and Violet (Alexis Bledel) have the market cornered on young assassins. Working for a boss, they are sent out on jobs working as a team. Each assassin is numbered according to rank. Violet is number 8 and Daisy is number 9. The girls happily exist in this weird world where teen assassins are a possibility and are good ones at that.
All things change when they are asked a guy named Michael (James Gandolfini) who has double-crossed Violet and Daisy’s boss, as well as another crime boss. Not being the most savvy assassins, they fall asleep on the job waiting for him to come home. Michael proceeds to go about his business while he waits for them to wake up. He is expecting them and is not afraid.
I can watch just about every Saoirse Ronan film out there. Coming off The Host, this is a totally different vibe. Daisy is still unsure, somewhat moral, still dreaming of her favorite pop star, and the job seems more like a way to make some good money. Ronan brings an innocence to Daisy. She obviously is second in command to Violet, following her lead. However, Daisy is much more prone to becoming affected by killing people. Because of this, Michael is able to visibly affect Daisy by connecting with her and get under her skin.
Alexis Bledel plays the harder Violet, who has been in the game longer and has already lost one partner. She is stronger, more driven, and not much for chit chatting with the targets. But like all young assassins, she is prone to screwing up. Michael does not have as much of an effect on her, but by the end of the film, you can see that he has.
James Gandolfini plays a father figure, a failed one. Miserable about his life and his health, Michael egged on some hits on himself to put him out of his misery. There is nothing terribly exciting about his performance because I have seen it before in his other projects. It is not a challenging role, but putting him opposite of two young actors for basically the whole film gives Gandolfini a different type of acting experience.
There are bit roles by Danny Trejo, Marianne Jean-Baptiste, and John Ventimiglia, but the film is focused on Saoirse Ronan, Alexis Bledel, and James Gandolfini.
I found how the film is split up into acts to be one the most interesting things about the film. Each act is numbered and given a title. While the film still flows with these splits, it is just something that is not used very often in film.
Violet & Daisy is something that audiences will be attracted to just because of who is involved and what the film is about. It is an okay film, but there is nothing extraordinary about it. It does move a little slow and it is not a gripping thriller. It is more a film about three characters and what changes in the time they spent together. But hey, it has two girls dressed up in nun outfits delivering pizzas that then turns into a gun fight. How many other films are you going to see this year that have that?
I give Violet & Daisy 2.5 “glasses of milk” out of 5.
by Sarah Ksiazek