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mob

The Client (1994)

DIRECTOR: Joel Schumacher

CAST:

Brad Renfro, Susan Sarandon, Tommy Lee Jones, Mary-Louise Parker, Anthony LaPaglia, Ossie Davis, J.T. Walsh, Bradley Whitford, Anthony Heald, William Sanderson, Kim Coates, Will Patton, Anthony Edwards, Micole Mercurio, William H. Macy, Ron Dean, Walter Olkewicz, David Speck

REVIEW:

The Client is a slickly-crafted thriller that is almost- but not quite- saved from its own accelerating plot unlikelihoods by a competent production and capable performances. Continue reading

The Godfather Part II (1974)

DIRECTOR: Francis Ford Coppola

CAST: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Diane Keaton, Robert Duvall, John Cazale, Talia Shire, Lee Strasberg

REVIEW:

A companion piece in the true sense of the word and regarded as arguably the best sequel ever made, The Godfather Part II (which was greenlit before the first movie was even released) only further deepens and enrichens the characters and themes from its predecessor while Francis Ford Coppola and Mario Puzo weave an even more ambitious web. Like The Lord of the Rings, The Godfather and The Godfather Part II are less a film series than one combined continuous story rightfully taken as a whole.

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The Godfather (1972)

DIRECTOR: Francis Ford Coppola

CAST: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton, Talia Shire, John Cazale

REVIEW:

Has any other motion picture defined a genre the way The Godfather did for the gangster film? Since its release in 1972 (receiving ten Oscar nominations and winning Best Picture), it has represented the gold standard to which all other mob movies are held. Yet The Godfather, adapted by Francis Ford Coppola from the novel by Mario Puzo (who also wrote the screenplay), is no mere gangland shoot-em-up (in fact, violence comes in short, jarring bursts, few and far between). What really grants the film its distinction is the core themes of family, an underlying character arc that ultimately resembles a Shakespearean tragedy, the careful technical accomplishment of the entire production, and the richness of Puzo’s script carefully weaving myriad subplots into a cohesive whole. Non-fans of the gangster movie genre might not be enthralled, and the nearly three hour runtime and slow burn pace represents a sizable commitment of time and attention, but for mob movie aficionados, this is as good as it gets, and skillful cinematic craftsmanship by any objective standard.

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