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Robert De Niro

Stardust (2007)

DIRECTOR: Matthew Vaughn

CAST: Charlie Cox, Claire Danes, Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert De Niro, Mark Strong, Jason Flemyng, Sienna Miller

REVIEW:

An adaptation of the acclaimed illustrated fantasy novel by Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess, Stardust isn’t the equal of, say, The Princess Bride, but it’s an entry in the fantasy genre that’s (mostly) appropriate for older children while also entertaining adults, and blends dashes of romance, adventure, comedy, and horror into an enjoyable confection.

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The Score (2001)

DIRECTOR: Frank Oz

CAST: Robert De Niro, Edward Norton, Marlon Brando, Angela Bassett

REVIEW:

The Score isn’t a classic entry in the heist movie genre, but it’s a slick little diversion that sets fairly modest goals and achieves them, gives us some interesting interplay between accomplished actors, and treads familiar ground with enough assurance to make us not mind coming along for the ride. Continue reading

Heat (1995)

DIRECTOR: Michael Mann

CAST: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer, Tom Sizemore, Diane Venora, Ashley Judd, Amy Brenneman, Jon Voight, Mykelti Williamson, Dennis Haysbert, Wes Studi, Ted Levine, William Fichtner, Danny Trejo, Kevin Gage, Natalie Portman

REVIEW:

Heat is writer-director Michael Mann’s (Manhunter, The Last of the Mohicans) magnum opus ode to the crime thriller genre, what could have been a generic tale of cops and robbers elevated to crime epic by a level of depth and nuance one doesn’t often find in the genre, assured direction, and a smart screenplay that has something to say beyond hard-boiled crimebusters cliches.  This is just as masterful filmmaking as Mann’s 1992 adventure The Last of the Mohicans, and in a completely different genre and setting.   Continue reading

A Bronx Tale (1993)

DIRECTOR: Robert De Niro

CAST: Robert De Niro, Chazz Palminteri, Lillo Brancato, Francis Capra, Kathryn Narducci, Taral Hicks

REVIEW:

For his directorial debut, Robert De Niro tells a coming-of-age tale set against the backdrop of a Bronx neighborhood under the Mafia’s influence (the screenplay was written by Chazz Palminteri, who adapted it from his own one-man play partially based on his own childhood).  A Bronx Tale could be considered a “mob movie”, but that’s more the backdrop than the focus, and the movie avoids melodramatic stereotypes. 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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