Make the Wiseguys Weep follows the career of Jimmy Roselli, the Italian-American crooner destined to become the next Frank Sinatra, but who was nearly destroyed by his own erratic integrity, his refusal to compromise and his lifelong feud with Sinatra.
The Rizzos, a family who doesn't share their habits, aspirations, and careers with one another, find their delicate web of lies disturbed by the arrival of a young ex-con (Strait) brought ... See full summary »
Raymond De Felitta
Stephen Dorff narrates this tale about how his life goes astray as his character attempts to strike a balance between the demands of directing his first film and the pressures of his new ... See full summary »
Cousin Bette is a poor and lonely seamstress, who, after the death of her prominent and wealthy sister, tries to ingratiate herself into lives of her brother-in-law, Baron Hulot, and her ... See full summary »
Confused, non-linear film tells the sexual story of a film director from his life at age 5, age 12, age 16, a man embarking on his first film in 1950's Tunisia, and finally to his current ... See full summary »
Danny returns to the Bronx after serving in WWII. He dreams of becoming a songwriter and instead gets sidetracked by an aging boxer tired of taking dives. After an ingenious ploy, both ... See full summary »
An unseen narrator looks back to 1956, on Staten Island, when Buddy, an Italian guy with big dreams, buys a house planning to live upstairs with his wife Estelle and run a bar downstairs. The first problem is Estelle's lack of confidence in Buddy. Then, Irish tenants upstairs refuse to move and won't pay rent; plus, the woman upstairs is about to have a baby. The next problem is the baby: once he's born, it's clear his father was Black. The Irish guy splits; Buddy evicts mother and child, then feels guilt and sets her up in a flat while she sorts out an adoption. Estelle's lack of faith, the Irish lass's spirit, Buddy's dream, racial prejudice, and the baby's fate play out. Written by
It seemed strange to see the decidedly outer-borough "Two Family House" at an expensive Manhattan movie theater, until during the opening credits two old ladies sat in front of me, put their coats on the two seats between them, and proceeded to loudly comment on the proceedings to each other throughout the whole movie.
Much like the friends of the protagonists do in this very sweet yet honest depiction of post-WWII life on Staten Island when an off-islander disrupts the quotidian.
While it drags a bit here and there, and the voice-over narration sometimes re-states the already visually obvious, the very New York characters (including one played by "Pussy" of "The Sopranos") are real people in real situations and realistic traps. This is less schmaltzy than Barry Levinson's Baltimore nostalgia-fests.
Filmed in Staten Island, Jersey City and Bayonne, the settings are accompanied by lovely period music by the John Pizzarelli Trio (who also does a cameo appearance as Julius LaRosa).
This is one of those small, charming indie movies that seems to be a labor of love, like a jewel of a short story.
(originally written 10/14/2000)
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?