Bleak, pessimistic, dark, and even heartbreaking... and thoroughly engaging at every step of the way, and absolutely worth seeing. What distinguishes it from other movies in the genre is the cast of characters surrounding the eponymous gangster, all periodically convening in and departing from an ice cream shop on the Neptune boardwalk in NYC, just east of the better-known Coney Island. The entire cast is superb, and you'll see many familiar faces, including a very young Shelley Winters near the end, nearly unrecognizable. The many interlocking parts and character arcs tell stories of defeat, longing, revenge, desperation, jealousy, and cutthroat competition. I wonder if Coppola was inspired by this movie to include the screeching elevated train sounds in The Godfather restaurant hit scene. Lovely noirish lighting and camerawork -- keep a lookout for a recurring chessboard motif on ceilings and floors.