Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Gangs of New York

Martin Scorsese, 2002 (9.1*)
This is Scorsese's most ambitious achievement, staggering in scale and execution. It's also based on a true history of New York, at a time when large immigrant gangs controlled the Five Points area of Manhattan, eventually rioting over the draft and causing the U.S. Navy to be called in to bombard the citizens, the only time in U.S. history we warred against our own citizens.

Leonard diCaprio and Cameron Diaz are both pretty good, as lovers who meet when she picks his pocket, but Daniel-Day Lewis is superb as the archetypal villain, Bill the Butcher (head of the "Native American Party", meaning the earlier arriving Irish immigrants), and who won every acting award that year except the Oscar® (18 in all). You'll never forget his glass eye with the U.S. shield as a pupil. Nominated for 10 Oscars®, won none.

Quote: It's not the ballots that decide the elections, it's the counters. (Boss Tweed)
Quote2: You can always hire one-half of the poor to kill the other half. (Boss Tweed)
Quote3: Well, all the good Irish already came over, all we're getting now are the dregs. (Bill the Butcher)


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Artist, photographer, composer, author, blogger, metaphysician, herbalist

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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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