With Cannes 2014 only six weeks away , I thought I'd put together a list. I didn't realise how ridiculously…
We Own the Night
Two brothers on opposite sides of the law. Beyond their differences lies loyalty.
A New York nightclub manager tries to save his brother and father from Russian mafia hit men.
We Own the Night is James Gray’s austere, no-nonsense neo-noir set against a sepia tone, cocaine-fueled, late ‘80s New York nightscape that is part brooding crime saga and part familial melodrama, spearheaded by an impressively imposing lead performance from the fierce Joaquin Phoenix. This is the second of three collaborative efforts of Gray and Phoenix, a director / actor team which I find very effective and riveting to behold (I have yet to see The Yards however). The story is textbook noir, one that is undeniably straightforward and traditionally structured, yet thematically rich and engaging. Gray infuses art house sensibilities with action thriller tropes, resulting in what looks like a modern drug epic yet deep inside is actually pure, classic…
Think of it as the inverse of The Godfather; James Gray’s family crime saga imagines the Grusinsky brothers (Mark Wahlberg and Joaquin Phoenix) as warring ideologies: one runs a drug-fueled nightclub in Brooklyn while the other is captain of police. The patriarch is the police chief, and as such, Phoenix portrays the family’s club managing black sheep. Containing all of the tropes of a thrilling gangster epic (two set pieces in particular are outstanding), it’s the intimacy and conflict between these characters that interests Gray most. In turn, a genre film of modest scale transforms into something complex and deeply felt.
America just before it stopped producing anything (except money, for a while, then debt). cops the last of ravaged lower middle class.
This film gets by on the charisma of it's stars alone. Although the story is interesting, the character development (and therefore my investment in the movie) is lacking and the pace is almost pedestrian. These problems also manifested themselves in Gray's preceding movie The Yards 8 years previous, it's a shame it hasn't really improved. The guy knows how to put together a cracking cast though....
1.) I objected to the script of Two Lovers on the grounds that it was really cheesy. The same tendency pops up here, but now I'm more confident that the movie-cliche lines are something of a feint, their inherent meaninglessness a signifier for Gray's characters' behavioral artificiality. He's evidently not interested in conventionally compelling dialogue--he crowds every scene with ambient sound or diegetic music and lets Joaquin Phoenix mumble through every line as much as he wants. He's more invested in atmosphere of a conversation, its contribution to the tableau he's meticulously crafted around it--this creates a curious disengagement from narrative, floating it into abstraction and stalling momentum.
2.) This is obviously to advance the power of his images.…
I have avoided this film because I didn't think I would like it but damn what an opening! Joaquin Phoenix is excellent but he usually is, Eva Mendes is stunning and it's nice to see Robert Duvall doing good work again. I shouldn't have waited so long to see this it's a good movie. The smartest thing the director did was to keep Mark Wahlberg's part to a minimum.
clash of cultures with emotional authenticity and terrific performances.
Good movie, all though it had it flaws. All though I'm weak for thrillers like this, so I'm probably a bit generous with my rating.¨
I vipped between a 7 and 8, but ended up with a very strong 7.
It’s become clear to me at this point (with only Two Lovers left to watch), that James Gray gives Joaquin Phoenix grand character arcs that run record long distances in a short period of time. In The Yards he’s fun-loving and supportive, then cowardly and jealous to all kinds of too-far-gone mixed up. In The Immigrant he’s a charlatan to a possibly dangerous stray dog in love to sacrificial raw meat. And then there’s We Own the Night, which could also lovingly be called The Joaquin Phoenix Show. Full of dismissive defense mechanisms towards his family (getting high and feigning boredom) and underground success and love but by the end, it’s a 180; something lost and something gained. What is…
Gray certainly isn't breaking any new ground here, but there's plenty to like, most notably the terrific car chase in the rain.
This film is both flawed and underrated.
This film isn't terrible, but it's nowhere near great.
There wasn't much to it and some of the scripting was forced to the point I was thinking "really? Did you need to set that up quite so obviously?" e.g. Chief declaring who his son was...
Anyway, aside from that it was ok.
Find it odd seeing Wahlberg as a serious character as in so many films I enjoy his funny expressions. He does comedy well.
It was average.
La noche de Brooklyn es pesada, y parece más antigua de lo que se supone que es. Los policías son austeros, hablan lo justo y no dan la impresión de ser otra cosa que seres pequeños apoyados en sus rituales y en la idea colectiva del propio cuerpo. Los mafiosos son tradicionales y elegantes si están en la cima de la pirámide, y brutales si operan en la misma calle, sin llegar a convertirse en las deformaciones barrocas que representan la mayoría de películas actuales relacionadas con el narcotráfico. Entre medias está Bobby, y su historia de conversión, de adoctrinamiento (algunos dirían redención, aunque no estoy de acuerdo).
"We Own the Night" es una obra maestra de la atmósfera, al…
Didn't even make my top 50 back in 2007, but now would be the best film of that year, second only to THE PAGE TURNER. Has gone from my least to most favourite James Gray film.
Joaquin Phoenix does a great line in tortured black sheep, but here it's more deeply felt than anywhere else I've seen it and so much more than an impressive actor's trick.
Has Mark Wahlberg ever been this internal and muted? He even bows out of the finale shootout, something you can never imagine the machismo of Mark Wahlberg the actor allowing.
Even though they project strength, these characters are vulnerable in a way that's evident the moment you meet them - thankfully, you don't have to endure an hour of macho-posturing to get to the real people like any of the cops or criminals in a Scorsese film.
Totalmente absorbente. La persecución en coche bajo la lluvia es difícil de olvidar. Un drama donde caben polis, disparos, amor, envidias y violencia.
- Clouds of Sils Maria
- Goodbye to Language
- The Homesman
- Wings of Fame
- The Wild Bunch
- The Wicker Man
- Wolf Children
- Where Eagles Dare
Each week I'll post a new letter and all you have to do is nominate a film that you think…
- Wild Tales
- The Wonders
Films that have played in the main competition in the Cannes Film Festival (since 1950).