Welcome to this blog of my film reviews. Some have been drafted carefully on paper, others I have sat and typed. I'm going to make it clear right now that I don't expect you to agree with my (re)views, or to like my style of writing. However, I want my views to be just out there and open, as a person who wishes to express himself from deep within. Feel free to comment and debate with me, but I do ask that you are civil and not harsh, as any comments which are basically swear words and insults will automatically be deleted. Also any text that is in orange (and often bold) is a Hyperlink to either a source, or a previous post for background reference.

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Public Enemies


In Michael Mann's latest crime thriller Johnny Depp stars as notorious 1930s gangster John Dillinger, who went on a spree of bank robberies between 1933 and 1934, before being gunned down as he leaves the Biograph Theatre in Chicago after seeing Manhattan Melodrama. Co-starring are Christian Bale as FBI Agent Melvin Purvis, who lead the hunt for Dillinger, and Marion Cotillard as Billie Frechette, the woman who stole Dillinger's heart.

The film may only be two and a quarter hours long, but it beautifully depicts and details the career and personal life of one of the most notorious gangsters of the 1930s. Each bank robbery, car chase and gun fight is intricately choreographed to really make the viewer feel that they are there, and keep you on the edge of your seat as the gripping, powerful action unfolds, and the build-ups to said sequences will really make the heart pound. The mise-en-scene is so detailed to make a really authentic 1930s America. It is all there - the black suits with trilbies, the (now) vintage cars with running boards, even the decor of the '30s cinemas and banks are created with as much detail as possible, to make the unfolding action feel like you are really there, it feels that authentic and is created with such strong Art Direction.

The film, however, is carried from start to finish by its cast. Depp is on top form as Dillinger, making the character cold and calculated to a truly spine-tingling level, yet also makes him sophisticated and charming. Bale makes Purvis a strong, driven and determined character, like many of the characters Bale plays. And Cotillard is wonderful as Frechette, making her so very charming and seductive that she will transfix many male viewers.

In short Public Enemies is a beautifully choreographed film, full of intense action and carried by its three excellent leading stars.

Johnny Depp, Christian Bale, Marion Cotillard, Billy Crudup, Stephen Dorff, Stephen Lang, Stephen Graham, Jason Clarke, David Wenham, Christian Stolte, James Russo, Michael Vieau, Giovanni Ribisi, Spencer Garrett, Channing Tatum, Don Frye, Rory Cochrane, Peter Gerety, Branka Katic, John Ortiz, Dominick Lombardozzi, Bill Camp, Michael Bentt, Carey Mulligan, John Michael Bolger, Emilie de Ravin, Shawn Hatosy, Matt Craven, Lili Taylor, David Warshofsky, Leelee Sobieski, Diana Krall.

Empire Award nomination: Best Thriller.

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