A highly styled 'genre' film which can perhaps be seen as a pastiche of all gangster movies. Tom Reagan is the laconic anti-hero of this amoral tale which is also, paradoxically, a look at morals within the criminal underworld of the 1930s. Two rival gangs vie for control of a city where the police are pawns, and the periodic busts of illicit drinking establishments are no more than a way for one gang to get back at the other. Black humour and shocking violence compete for screen time as we question whether or not Tom, right-hand man of the Irish mob leader, really has a heart. Written by
The film never expressly states in what year it takes place. The Model A Fords seen throughout the film may provide a baseline, as that automobile was introduced in 1927, but other cars are also visible, ranging from 1926 to 1930 model years. The calendar in Johnny Casper's office could also provide a hint, but it does not appear to be reliable. The month is not visible on the calendar, but the first is shown to be on a Saturday. That Saturday is in red to indicate a holiday, and the only holiday on the 1st of the month in the US is New Years Day. However, the weather in the film certainly does not seem like winter weather in what is probably New York City. Ultimately, it seems likely that the calendar is not a useful guide. If you choose to ignore the weather, and note that the film takes place during Prohibition, the only possible years (when the 1st fell on a Saturday) are 1921 and 1927. See more »
After The Dane punches Tom to the floor in Caspar's house and threatens to beat Mink's fate out of Tom, the line, "Is this how you taught Drop his story?" from Tom is dubbed over his unmoving lips. See more »
I am gonna send you to a deep, dark place and I am gonna have fun doing it!
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There are very few films that engulf the viewer and demand them to give their full attention. This is one of those rarities. While viewing this film one finds themselves sharing the same space and breathing the same air that the characters do. It's beautiful. It's the stuff of great story-telling.
I must admit, I am a great fan of Gabriel Byrne in anything, no matter what it is, so maybe I'm jaded. And as I have seen practically everything with him in it, I must say it is refreshing to see him work with an amazing cast and script to back up his talent.
And the music is terrific. How ironic to have "Danny Boy"-a sentimental grandparents' favorite- playing while machine guns are ripping apart mens' flesh. The cinematography is superb also. Not only do the characters speak in a language rich with visuals, they live in a moving painting.
This was one of those films where I watched all the way through the credits slack-jawed and was sad to see the film end. It's that good. I'm not especially a fan of gangster films but I am willing to make exceptions and Miller's Crossing is one of them.
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