All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
What are you prepared to do?
Young Treasury Agent Elliot Ness arrives in Chicago and is determined to take down Al Capone but it's not going to be easy, because Capone has the police in his pocket. Ness meets Jimmy Malone a veteran patrolman and probably the most honorable one in the force. He asks Malone to help him get Capone but Malone warns him that if he goes after Capone, he is going to war.
The hostility towards this film is baffling. From Morricone's score to the cinematography, The Untouchables oozes in style, and you only need to see the unforgattable train-station shoot-out to figure that one out. Historically inaccurate? Maybe, but I'll be damned if anyone can top De Niro's Al Capone. Some corny dialogue and poor direction aside, I find The Untouchables is as solid as the rest of De Palma's movies.
In his excellent review of The Untouchables, Cramer K opens up by asking if there has ever been a more bald-faced cinematic thief than Brian De Palma. You would probably expect a huge fan of De Palma's such as I to launch an impassioned defence of him and state that's not the case.
However, to quote a particular excellent episode of Blackadder (doesn't narrow it down, obviously), De Palma is as guilty as a puppy sitting next to a pile of poo. I think the way these things work is that if the director in question is a load of crap and you don't particular like his or her work, it is more likely to bother you. Rarely during gushing…
Brian De Palma's crime/mobster film is one of style over substance. One that I won't comment on its historical accuracy due to me not knowing enough about this period.
What I do know is at the core of the story its factual however the story around the times is probably more for engaging the audience.
What makes The Untouchables so enjoyable is the set pieces of the times being spot on for the 30's prohibition era.
Some hammy acting kept me from loving it however enough of the episodic scenes were enough to make it very enjoyable.
most of the Untouchables is a staid period piece with hints of mamet flavor. david mamet is certainly a good screenwriter and I'd argue that de palma isn't the best pairing, despite their shared love for fast-talking, chest-puffing protags. mamet's meat n potatoes script leaves little room for de palma to show off his virtuosity.
of course, you get the exceptions. there's the famous battleship potemkin homage, and there's the elevator assassination scene (one sends up eisensteinian montage, the other is structured around an extended tracking shot). these two are immediately set in a different class from the other major setpieces, which are sometimes hindered by story functionality, and generally dulled by morricone's misjudged score.
what to take from this? de palma just needs to be able to do his thing. his best films are organic collaborations with freer material, and his dullest films (though I won't necessarily say his worst) are collaborations with high-profile screenwriters.
Has there ever been a more bald-faced cinematic thief than Brian De Palma? I mean sure, there's Quentin Tarantino, but at least Tarantino steals from movies that nobody has seen. De Palma steals from movies that everybody has seen. And yet, and yet... I still kind of admire the guy. Granted, his recent output has been impressively terrible (with the noted of exception of Femme Fatale, a movie I will defend until my dying breath). But when he's on his game he's the like the DJ Shadow of modern cinema, taking samples from all over the movie world and combining them to make something unassailably cool.
So how does The Untouchables fit into the De Palma canon? Not very well,…
Film 30 of The June Challenge
"Here endeth the lesson."
Right from the first few seconds of that opening credits sequence, you know that this is going to be good. Aided by a fantastic Ennio Morricone score, Brian De Palma manages to create a stylish and occasionally gritty crime thriller that manages to capture the 30's atmosphere brilliantly. Plus, the supporting cast includes Sean Connery being, well, Sean Connery and Robert De Niro as Al Capone who despite not actually having loads of screentime, has a presence felt throughout the entire film, whilst being genuinely threatening in the scenes he is in.
I did mention the soundtrack was amazing, right?
A good movie, but a victim of it's time: the direction of photography and overall cinematography is full of 80's "cool" tricks and excess that haven't aged very well.
#3 in today's marathon of Brian De Palma movies I didn't want to watch. This one is probably his most popular movie among old white people, and is the most "populist" of those that I'd seen up to this point. It feels very much like a studio movie much of the time. However, there are a few sequences in it that are pure De Palma and assuredly would not have been even remotely similar if handled by any other director, particularly the famous shoot-out/homage to Battleship Potemkin.
It's quite a watchable movie, but it's got way too many concessions to lame studio standards. First and foremost is Robert De Niro, who is just awful here. It seems like a harbinger…
Kevin Costner remains the Keanu Reeves of his time, managing to seem completely emotionless and lifeless in every scene he's in. Only I think Costner is probably the worse actor.
Brian De Palma continues to underwhelm me with every movie I watch. A master of the trade, with so much technical bravado, and yet so tactless and predictable.
This movie, on paper, is untouchable (sorry). Mamet writing your script, De Niro and Connery as your leading men, and a Hollywood elite as your director. How did all of that churn out this turd, filled with bad jokes and one of the most uninteresting opening 45 minutes I can remember.
Excellent film, but lost half a star for the awful music.
"What are you prepared to do?"
It just gets better and better from beginning to end.
An uneven mob drama that provides little in terms of consistency. It has the usual fun visual hallmarks of De Palma's work, even if some of it is taken directly from Battleship Potemkin. However, most of the characters seem rather lacking in investing elements or depth. Costner especially plays such a milk toast and bland protagonist with a generic family life and few of the other titular cops are engaging at all. Sean Connery gives this little to nothing despite his eventual Oscar win, feeling like a standard Connery badass rather than an Irish American cop. Even Robert De Niro as Al Capone, despite being over the top, is rather one note. It's still watchable for its style, but it doesn't have much else beyond that.
It seems to be easy these days to hate on The Untouchables for being labelled by some as a classic crime/gangster film. Though it may feel dated now and some of the score by Ennio Morricone in the first half of the film may feel out of place, overall I still very much enjoy the film as a whole. The film primarily focuses on the men that take Capone down rather than the latter himself, though Robert De Niro makes a memorable impression in the little screentime he has as Al, being pretty handy with a baseball bat and making the character larger-than-life, in a way only Capone himself could. Perfect foil for Eliot Ness to take down, a noble…
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Watched The Untouchables for the first time in forever. This was a constant cable rewatch on TBS for me.
This is the first time I've seen the movie since getting into Boardwalk Empire, which contains my favorite screen version of Al Capone by Stephen Graham.
And I think I hadn't seen Miller's Crossing last time either.
My point is, this WAS a favorite gangster movie... but I've seen a few since.
And I'm kinda bummed, this movie does not hold up quite as well as it did in my memory.
The cheese factor is through the ROOF on this thing. I love Kevin Costner as an actor but this characterization of Elliot Ness is pretty lame, man. His dialog in…
Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
List made from the book 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die. This list just from the 2014 edition,…