7.0/10
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121 user 70 critic

King of New York (1990)

A former drug lord returns from prison determined to wipe out all his competition and distribute the profits of his operations to New York's poor and lower classes in this stylish and ultra violent modern twist on Robin Hood.

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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Jimmy Jump (as Larry Fishburne)
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Janet Julian ...
Joey Chin ...
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Raye
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Blood (as Leonard Lee Thomas)
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Tanner (as Roger Smith)
Carrie Nygren ...
Melanie
Ernest Abuba ...
King Tito
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Storyline

After completing a lengthy prison sentence, one-time drug kingpin Frank White returns to New York intent on reestablishing his empire and making things as they were before he left. Others of course have taken over the business during his absence but that clearly isn't going to stop White. While he is gunning down the opposition, he decides he's going to give away the money he'll make to modernize the hospital in his old neighborhood. Drug dealers aren't the only thing he has to worry about however: a group of rogue cops decide they are going to take him down. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The cops tried to stop him their way...Now they'll have to do it HIS way. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Release Date:

28 September 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El rey de New York  »

Box Office

Gross:

$2,554,476 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The work of real-life friends David Caruso and Wesley Snipes in this film helped them get casted in, respectively, NYPD Blue (1993) and New Jack City (1991) each of which launched both actors into stardom. See more »

Goofs

When Bishop is reviewing Frank White's rap sheet on his computer, the word "parole" is misspelled as "parol", and "personnel" is misspelled as "personel". See more »

Quotes

Blood: [pulls down pants exposing his bare butt to Bishop, Gilley and Flanigan] Why don't you kiss my ass?
See more »

Connections

References Once Upon a Time in America (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

Concierto for Violin OP. 8# Autumn
Antonio Vivaldi
Arranged by Joe Delia
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User Reviews

 
Hybrid Gangsta/Mafia Film with Some Terrific Acting
10 July 2008 | by (Vulcan) – See all my reviews

In many of Ferrara's best films, including The King of New York, good and evil are not simply blurred distinctions, they are inseparable. Though this characteristic is more apparent and more powerfully examined in Bad Lieutenant than 'King', there are characters on both sides of the central conflict in this film who are equally disturbing and despicable. The word anti-hero was made for the main characters in this film.

Leading in one of his better roles since Deer Hunter, is Christopher Walken. The support cast is something of an all-star list of genre films - Fishburne, Caruso, Snipes, Giancarlo Esposito, Buscemi... And all of the acting is excellent.

Walken plays a sociopathic organized crime kingpin who has just been released from jail and wants to improve his public image while taking over all of the profitable crime in New York. So, he starts offing the competition and donating to impoverished hospitals, etc. Some have compared Frank White to Robin Hood, but since I find it difficult to think of the English Folk hero as a psychotic with no moral compass whatsoever, I disagree.

Worth seeing for Walken and Fishburne's performances alone, King of New York has, over the years developed something of a cult following. Considering the cast and the directorial talent, this is no surprise. Ferrara makes an entertaining film which, though it doesn't offer a great deal of new material, offers some unique characterizations and avoid devolving into straight action.

Highly recommended for fans of Walken, Fishburne, Caruso and Ferrara. Recommended for crime drama and gangsta film fans. Weakly recommended for Snipes fans.


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