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City by the Sea (2002)

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Vincent Lamarca, whose father was executed for a 1950s kidnapping of a child, grew up to become a police officer, only to see his own son become a murderer.


(article) (as Michael McAlary), (screenplay)
1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Maggie (as Patti Lupone)
Vanessa Hansen
Michael P. Moran ...


New York City homicide detective Vincent LaMarca has forged a long and distinguished career in law enforcement, making a name for himself as a man intensely committed to his work. But on his latest case, the stakes are higher for Vincent--the suspect he's investigating is his own son. He and Joey have been painfully estranged ever since Vincent divorced his wife and left the decaying boardwalks of Long Beach, Long Island for the anonymity of Manhattan and a successful career with the NYPD. He lives his life in solitude, keeping his girlfriend at arm's length; the closest relationship he maintains is with his partner, Reg--and Vincent makes sure that stops at the precinct door. As long as Vincent lives in the protection of the present, he doesn't have to deal with the pain of his past--or his sorrow over his broken relationship with Joey. But this murder investigation is drawing Vincent home to Long Beach, the self-proclaimed City by the Sea, where the past has been waiting for him to ... Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


When you're searching for a killer... the last suspect you want to see is your son.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, drug use and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

6 September 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mark of a Murderer  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$8,935,426 (USA) (6 September 2002)


$22,433,915 (USA) (8 November 2002)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Michael Caton-Jones was unhappy with the final result and said that working on this film for 3 years was the worst and most depressing period of his career. See more »


Joey sells his football ring but is still wearing it in subsequent scenes. See more »


Vincent LaMarca: How'd we get this way son? I remember the day you were born.
Joey: Yeah? Well, I remember the day you left. So we're even.
See more »

Crazy Credits

This motion picture was not actually filmed in Long Beach, New York. See more »


Referenced in Film Geek (2005) See more »


Prelude Op. 28, No. 15
(Raindrop Prelude) (uncredited)
By Frédéric Chopin
Performed by Bryan Pezzone
See more »

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User Reviews

Gritty Drama More Than A Crime Film
31 January 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a somewhat run-of-the-mill modern-day crime movie elevated by the presence of actor Robert De Niro. He plays a policeman who is a father to his druggie son, who is accused of murder.

"Vincent LaMarca" (De Niro) is torn between the guilt of being an absentee father to his kid ("Joey," played by James Franco) but still loving him enough to help him and yet still be a good, honest cop.

This is a gritty film, a bid sordid in spots. The locale is a grimy Atlantici City-type on-the- skids town by the ocean. It isn't pretty. As tough as the story can be, it's still interesting and recommended as a decent crime film. Actually, it's much more of a drama than an action-crime film....but I liked it. It's an interesting character study, as well.

41 of 46 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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