5.2/10
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18 user 16 critic

Illtown (1996)

Dante and his girlifrend Micky run a very profitable drug operation in a seaside town, aided and abetted by a host of teens who sell the smack at discos around town, as well as by Lucas, a ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Dante
...
Micky
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Gabriel
...
Francis (Cisco)
...
Lilly
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D'Avalon
...
George
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Lucas
...
Gunther
Adam Cartwright ...
The Kid
...
Young Flaco
Ian Marioles ...
Will Noney
Melanie Adams ...
Eristina
Mauricio Conpte ...
Pep Lecara
Matt McLane ...
Ghost Machine
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Storyline

Dante and his girlifrend Micky run a very profitable drug operation in a seaside town, aided and abetted by a host of teens who sell the smack at discos around town, as well as by Lucas, a corrupt cop who's on the take. Their downfall comes when they suspect one of the boys, Pep, of ripping them off, and his accidental death causes disloyalty among the teens, who suspect Dante offed them. All of this is perfect for the return of Gabriel, a one-time partner of Dante, who has just been released from jail, and has an almost angelic demeanor and the certainty that he can fix everyone's lives. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive strong drug use, violence and language, and for brief nudity
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Details

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Release Date:

16 January 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cidade Doente  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$14,478 (USA) (23 January 1998)

Gross:

$14,478 (USA) (23 January 1998)
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Company Credits

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Oscar Isaac. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Rewind This! (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

worth your while
20 July 2003 | by (Pittsburgh) – See all my reviews

Though a deliberately confusing ending ultimately undermines this film's potential, an excellent cast and unique storytelling approach make it well worth the time for anyone not expecting a straight-forward crime picture.

Director Nick Gomez, also responsible for "Laws of Gravity" and "New Jersey Drive," once again proves that he refuses to be predictable. The former plays like an updated "Mean Streets" overseen by the ghost of John Cassavetes and the latter like a straight-forward entry in the "Boyz in the Hood" sub-genre. "Illtown," on the other hand, is an ultra-stylized revenge/crime thriller mixed with a character drama mixed with wierd surrealism. The only thing I can think of to compare it to, at least on some levels, is Sergio Sollima's equally slow-paced and dreamy "Violent City." The Florida locations fit the mood perfectly. The protagonists are a bunch of laid-back, golf playin' smack dealers one would genuinely enjoy serving in a restaurant or at a ticket counter; the stereotpyes normally attached to their way of life are conspicuously absent. The final shoot-out between Rappaport and Trese is all style and no substance, but in such an oddly good way, it had me gawking with awe.

Lili Taylor, Adam Trese and Kevin Corrigan, all relative unknowns (which irks me), are all great here. Michael Rappaport, while somewhat over-exposed at this point, was also under-appreciated at the time of this film's release. He, Gomez regular Saul Stein, and even the oft-annoying Tony Danza all rise to the material, for which they are aptly cast.

Like I said, the end left me frustrated, but the overall experience is well worth it.


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