Monday, July 11, 2016


I missed this flick when it came out last year but heard great things about Johnny Depp's performance as "Whitey" Bulger, the Boston Irish mobster. So last night I tried to watch it. I usually can watch a movie all the way through, even if it doesn't live up to expectations, just because there's so much else for me to give my attention to like the acting or lighting or cinematography or art production or writing or directing etc.

But I had to turn this off about two thirds of the way through because I was just tired, and maybe even a little sick, of watching a sociopath be cruel. Depp's performance was another example of his range, in terms of character types he takes on, but the way he played Bulger it was all one note and a tiresomely hackneyed note for my taste. Talk about the banality of evil.

There were so many familiar faces among the cast it'd take a whole other post to list them all, but suffice it to say I found most of their performances disappointing. The accents were all over the place, almost none sounding like the Boston area. But then Joel Edgerton, who played John Connelly (the FBI agent Bulger was an informant for and using, as Connelly thought he was using Bulger) is an Aussie. And playing Bulger's Boston Irish Pol brother, was Benedict Cumberatch about as miscast as he could be.

But there were a couple of performances that were pretty perfect, one was Jesse Plemons as Bulger henchman Kevin Weeks and Rory Chocrane as Bulger hit man Stephen Flemmi (and W. Earl Brown  as another Bulger hit man, John Mortarano). Those guys put all the stars to shame. But in the end this is not a movie I'd recommend. And anyway, haven't we had enough movies about evil pricks? Time to make more flicks about the people making their world a better place, not destroying it and those around them.

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