Killing Them Softly Review

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Killing Them Softly is a movie I’ve been craving to see for a long time and maybe it’s because 2012 has had such an amazing track record, but there wasn’t much doubt in my mind that I was going to enjoy Killing Them Softly. This is one of the most disappointing movies I’ve seen in a long time. I’m not saying it’s one of the worst movies I’ve seen in a while, I’m saying it’s one of the most disappointing. I was expecting one thing, what I got was unfortunately not a good movie.

This is the second feature film by Andrew Dominik and just like his first feature, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, KIlling Them Softly stars Brad Pitt and a role he does wonders with. Unlike his first feature, Killing Them Softly was a bad movie. I loved The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, it was an incredibly well made film and the acting was amazing. This was another reason I was excited to see Killing Them Softly, it seemed to have that great combination of director and actors. The actors did what they could with the flat characters they were given and lightning just wasn’t able to strike twice when it came to Andrew Dominik’s career.

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford was just under three hours, while Killing Them Softly is just a little over an hour and a half. Killing Them Softly manages to feel longer than Dominik’s first feature. Now how did he manage to do that? It had something to do with meaningless scenes of dialogue that went absolutely nowhere, characters that could’ve easily been cut from the movie because their arcs or lack their of offer nothing to the film other than more wasted time, but worst of all it offers up for our appreciation a simplistic and predictable story with an obvious theme that could’ve been established in 5-minute short film.

I’ve read comments of people who enjoyed the film expressing that the reason there are people who don’t like it is because they don’t understand the underlying themes. My main compliant with the movie is that there was no way I couldn’t understand the point of the movie. There was no subtlety in the movie whatsoever, there was one purpose the film was attempting to get across and it was shoved farther and farther down my throat. Throughout the entire movie it is made completely obvious what the film maker’s agenda in making this film was and then the theme is punctuated by its last moments which is when I realized how much of a waste of time the movie really was.

If there was a bit of light that could be found in this dark and dull film, it would be some brilliant camera work and some good acting. The film was shot beautifully and when it comes to the performances I just can’t complain, it’s just sad these actors were given such lackluster characters and unimaginative dialogue. Killing Them Softly was a disappointment through and through and I can’t wait to just forget about it because the more I think about it, the more I just get frustrated.

Grade: C-

Top Ten Martin Scorsese Movies

If you know anything about film, you know the name of Martin Scorsese. He’s god’s gift to cinema and one of my favorite directors of all time. Scorsese has literally been making masterpieces since the 60s and hasn’t stopped since. When looking at his illustrious works, everyone has certain films they latch onto and they’re often very different and that’s because he has so much versatility.

He loves what he was born to do and that is making movies. Here is a list that celebrates his magnificent works of art. Here is a look at my favorite films of one of the most marvelous filmmakers of our time.

10. Bringing Out the Dead

Martin Scorsese’s character study of an ambulance driver driven to near insanity is nothing short of breath-taking. It’s incredibly fast-paced and filled with a adrenaline. From a surprsingly great performance from Nicholas Cage to his outrageous partners, rarely are you not entertained.

9. The Color of Money

I’m not a Tom Cruise fan in the least bit, but I can say with out a doubt that this is his best role. He is over shadowed by the great Paul Newman though, but that goeas without saying. The Color of Money is a highly engrossing look into the lives of pool hustlers. I’m not going to lie. I actually enjoy this sequel better than the classic original (“The Hustler”).

8. Casino

If Martin Scorsese could be considered to have a forte, it would with out a doubt be the Gangster genre. No one makes them better than he does. The first one you’ll find on my list would be the fantastic tale he weaves of crime in the city of Las Vegas. It’s one you won’ be able to take your eyes of, but it pales in comparison to some of his other excursions into crime.

7. The Aviator

The Aviator is a down right fantastic biopic about the life and times of Howard Hughes. The movie can be considered long, but every moment is meaningful and a film about someone’s life deserves a good length. I think Leonardo DiCaprio is a fantastic actor and this is the performance of is career. I doubt he will be able to top it.

6. Gangs of New York

Gangs of New York is a fantastically woven tale of vengeance set in a criminal-run New York city in the 1800s. Leonardo DiCaprio is great as the leading man, but the real praise belongs to Daniel Day-Lewis as the sadistic Bill “The Butcher” Cutting. Its a story told on an epic scale ands its truly impossible not to get enjoyment out of it.

5. Shutter Island

Shutter Island from start to finish is a dark and emotional roller coaster ride that never lets up even after the credits role. From the second the movie begins, the mood sets in and you both love and are a bit scared at what you’ve gotten yourself into. It’s a film that’s almost draining because of how intense it is. This is Martin Scorsese’s take on a psychological thriller and its the kind that every film lover has dreamed of being able to see.

4. Raging Bull

Raging Bull is a work of true art showing the raw and emotional life of the boxer Jake LaMotta. Its a poetic look into a life of brutality and pride. Scorsese holds no puches (pun intended) and Robert DeNiro gives the greatest performance he’s ever given. Raging Bull is truly a masterpiece for the way that it tells the tale of man whose not a hero or a villain, but just a man, no more, no less.

3. Taxi Driver

Taxi Driver is an unconventional tale told and acted to perfection. Its a character study of a sociopath dealing with the decay of the world around him. Taxi Driver unprecedented in the way that it tells a horrific tale through the eyes of a terrible person. We get a full examination of a mind that is unlike our own in almost every possible way. What is found is disturbing, cruel and above all, interesting. Robert DeNiro gives an amazing performance. I stand by my comment about the performance of his career would be found in Raging Bull, but I believe Taxi Driver surpasses Raging Bull as a film.

2. Goodfellas

Goodfellas is a movie that can best be described as a crash-course in absolutely everything you’d ever want to know about mobsters. You learn of every in and out of the mob through the telling of the tale of Henry Hill, a young man who had one wish, “to be a gangster”. Most would consider The Godfather to be the mobster movie, but I believe Goodfellas even surpasses that work of genius. Goodfellas is one of those films you can watch over and over and still get enjoyment. It truly is an unforgettable achievement in film and I’ve only seen one other movie Scorsese made that was able to top it.

1. The Departed

The Departed is nothing short of a flawless film. Its work of pure and incredible entertainment. A gritty piece of art that I consider to be one of the greatest films of all time. Each quote, character and scene is another brush stroke in an epic masterpiece of cops and robbers. Every single aspect is well thought out The Departed is the movie that got Scorsese his Oscars for both Best Picture and Best Director. Some would argue that the awards were given to him in recognition for his entire career and maybe that’s true, who knows? All I know is that The Departed is one of the greatest movies of all time and Martin Scorsese’s best work.