Directed by Martin Scorsese and based on the 2004 biographical book I Heard You Paint Houses by former homicide prosecutor, investigator and defense attorney Charles Brandt, The Irishman was released on Netflix this month. It chronicles the life of Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro), an alleged mafia hitman who confesses to a crime that he committed when working for the Bufalino crime family, headed by Russell Bufalino (Joe Pesci). Now older, the WWII veteran once again reflects on his most prolific hits and, in particular, considers his involvement with his good friend Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino)’s disappearance in 1975.
Directed by Todd Phillips, Joker is a standalone story centring on the iconic DC character of The Joker. Set in Gotham City, Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix) is a mentally-troubled comedian who lives with his mum (Frances Conroy). A clown-for-hire by day, Arthur is disregarded and mistreated by the fractured society of Gotham and soon embarks on a downward spiral of revolution and bloody crime, bringing him face-to-face with his alter-ego, “The Joker”.
Directed by David O. Russell, Joy is based on the true story of Joy Mangano (Jennifer Lawrence), a self-made millionaire who became the founder and matriarch of a powerful family business dynasty. Set in the early 1990s, the film follows a family across four generations, and centres around Joy, a divorced mother with two children, who reluctantly has her mother Terri (Virginia Madsen), father Rudy (Robert De Niro), grandmother Mimi (Diane Ladd), and her ex-husband Tony (Édgar Ramírez) living in her house.
Done with living an average life, Joy takes her future into her own hands and, with the help of financier, Rudy’s girlfriend Trudy (Isabella Rossellini), becomes an overnight success with a bright new invention – the Miracle Mop. As allies become adversaries and adversaries become allies, both inside and outside the family, Joy must overcome personal and professional obstacles to rise to the top.
(Written for Filmoria)
Next week sees the release of the hugely anticipated Legend, which stars Tom Hardy as both of the notorious Kray twins. To celebrate the film’s release, we take a look at 12 of the best on-screen portrayals of real-life gangsters in film.
Set to be released on 9th September and directed by Brian Helgeland, Legend tells the story of tells the story of the 1960s twin gangsters, Reggie and Ronnie Kray, two of the most well-known criminals in British history.
Directed and adapted by David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook is based on the novel of the same name by Matthew Quick. Examining a number of relationships and mental illnesses, the film follows Pat Solitano (Bradley Cooper), an ex-teacher with bipolar disorder who moves back in with his parents (Robert De Niro and Jacki Weaver) after being released from a psychiatric hospital. Determined to win back his estranged wife and rebuild his previous life, things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence), a mysterious girl with her own problems, who tells Pat that she will help him get his wife back if he enters a dance competition with her. As an unexpected bond begins to form between them, silver linings appear in both of their lives.