Writers: Michael Mahern, Nicholas Kazan
Composer: Michael Small
Starring: Christian Slater, Costas Mandylor, Richard Grieco, Patrick Dempsey, Robert Z'Dar, Michael Gambon, Anthony Quinn, Chris Penn, F. Murray Abraham, Seymour Cassel, Lara Flynn Boyle, Joe Viterelli, Titus Welliver
More info: IMDb
Tagline: They had what it took to build an empire...They just built it on the wrong side of the law.
Plot: The story of a group of friends in turn of the century New York, from their early days as street hoods to their rise in the world of organized crime. As their crime empire expands, they have to deal with many problems, including their own differing opinions on how to run their business, the local Godfather, and the psychotic Mad Dog Coll.
My rating: 5.5/10
Will I watch it again? No.
Oh boy is this underwhelming and cheesy as shit. Did you get a load of that trailer? Wow. It's hard not to laugh at it (they made better trailers for it but this one was the first one I watched on the DVD and I about fell out of my chair in disbelief of how bad it was). It felt so contrived that I'm compelled to look up the facts just to see how fast and loose they played with them. The connect the dots plot was often paper thin. They tried to cover a couple of decades in the span of 100 minutes and with a cast of pretty boys. Some of their acting was OK and some pretty sloppy. It shouldn't have been so for a high profile Hollywood picture. And I get why they throw the true story out the window, but did they hit the plot tropes that go with the rise and rise of a crime figure. Knowing that so much of this is bullshit hurts in trying to enjoy the show but there are some things I dug. The spinning newspapers and machine gun montages were outstanding and lots of fun. Shit. Now I'm trying to think of some other stuff I thought was nicely done and I can't think of any, even an hour outside of watching it. Nuts. I remember the love scene being unnecessary and bringing the film to a screeching halt. F. Murray Abraham is awesome in everything. That much I know. It kind of felt like a gangster version of YOUNG GUNS (1988) with all of the popular pretty boys of the day. If you're a Great Depression-era gangster fan like me, you're going to have to see this but for everybody else, watch a few seasons of the excellent BOARDWALK EMPIRE (2010) instead. At least it's closer to the truth and they're all trying really hard to make something worthwhile.