Wednesday, February 20, 2008

American Gangster: Movie Review

American Gangster PosterAmerican Gangster
Reviewed by Marti
CS Rating: Bigger and Badder DVD Release!
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0765429/

This weeks DVD release of American Gangster isn't the usual mix of commentary and a few deleted scenes. Here we have another version, almost 20 minutes longer than the original. American Gangster was passed over by the major awards, except for a supporting actress award for the outstanding Ruby Dee, but don't let that put you off.

We have a classic rise thru the ranks for plucky Frank Lucas(Washington), who grows a huge drug crime empire in 1970's New York's Harlem. His nemesis is the un-corruptible Cop, Richie Roberts(Crowe), struggling in a corrupt ridden Police Department, to shut down Lucas.

There the film deviates from predictable crime story; building into a story that amazes even more knowing this is all based on true events. Crowe and Washington are excellent as the two men in different worlds, who come to realise they have a lot more common than initially one would think.

The 70’s are captured well and Ridley Scott deserves credit for playing Lucas as an anti-hero in the Godfather sense. We have as much conflicting feelings for Lucas, as the characters have for those around them. This DVD release offers a new viewing experience by re-adding cut scenes into this stand alone verison with an extended ending.

Most DVD's nowadays offer a few deleted scenes, one after another with no real context. With these added scenes, we can get a bigger picture of the excellent portrayal of that rare breed of the noble criminal and the noble Cop who never bends the rules. This sets American Ganster a cut above the mountain of New York Harlem crime films out there. If your expecting some funky Shaft type adventure, this film delivers a lot more than that.

1 comment:

patrick said...

American Gangster reminded me yet again what a versatile actor Russel Crowe is… plus pretty much anything directed by Ridley Scott is gonna be good.

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