MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 109 this week

Public Enemies (2009)

 -  Biography | Crime | Drama  -  1 July 2009 (USA)
7.0
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.0/10 from 189,462 users   Metascore: 70/100
Reviews: 569 user | 346 critic | 35 from Metacritic.com

The Feds try to take down notorious American gangsters John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson and Pretty Boy Floyd during a booming crime wave in the 1930s.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

Emmy Awards 2014

We have the winners, photos and more in our 2014 Emmys section.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 27 titles
created 24 Dec 2011
 
a list of 21 titles
created 11 Apr 2012
 
a list of 27 titles
created 27 Nov 2012
 
a list of 22 titles
created 05 Jul 2013
 
a list of 35 titles
created 08 Jul 2013
 

Related Items

Search for "Public Enemies" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Public Enemies (2009)

Public Enemies (2009) on IMDb 7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Public Enemies.

User Polls

1 win & 11 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Horror | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The infamous story of Benjamin Barker, a.k.a Sweeney Todd, who sets up a barber shop down in London which is the basis for a sinister partnership with his fellow tenant, Mrs. Lovett. Based on the hit Broadway musical.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Alan Rickman
3:10 to Yuma (2007)
Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A small-time rancher agrees to hold a captured outlaw who's awaiting a train to go to court in Yuma. A battle of wills ensues as the outlaw tries to psych out the rancher.

Director: James Mangold
Stars: Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, Ben Foster
Blow (2001)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The story of George Jung, the man who established the American cocaine market in the 1970s.

Director: Ted Demme
Stars: Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Franka Potente
The Fighter I (2010)
Biography | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A look at the early years of boxer "Irish" Micky Ward and his brother who helped train him before going pro in the mid 1980s.

Director: David O. Russell
Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Christian Bale, Amy Adams
The Tourist (2010)
Action | Romance | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Revolves around Frank, an American tourist visiting Italy to mend a broken heart. Elise is an extraordinary woman who deliberately crosses his path.

Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Stars: Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie, Paul Bettany
Donnie Brasco (1997)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An FBI undercover agent infilitrates the mob and finds himself identifying more with the mafia life to the expense of his regular one.

Director: Mike Newell
Stars: Al Pacino, Johnny Depp, Michael Madsen
The Rum Diary (2011)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

American journalist Paul Kemp takes on a freelance job in Puerto Rico for a local newspaper during the 1960s and struggles to find a balance between island culture and the expatriates who live there.

Director: Bruce Robinson
Stars: Johnny Depp, Giovanni Ribisi, Aaron Eckhart
Secret Window (2004)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A writer is accused for plagiarism by a strange man, who then starts haunting him for "justice."

Director: David Koepp
Stars: Johnny Depp, Maria Bello, John Turturro
Drama | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An uncommonly gentle young man, who happens to have scissors for hands, falls in love with a beautiful adolescent girl.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder, Dianne Wiest
From Hell (2001)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

In Victorian Era London, a troubled clairvoyant police detective investigates the murders by Jack The Ripper.

Directors: Albert Hughes, Allen Hughes
Stars: Johnny Depp, Heather Graham, Ian Holm
Dark Shadows (2012)
Comedy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An imprisoned vampire, Barnabas Collins, is set free and returns to his ancestral home, where his dysfunctional descendants are in need of his protection.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green
Rescue Dawn (2006)
Adventure | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A US Fighter pilot's epic struggle of survival after being shot down on a mission over Laos during the Vietnam War.

Director: Werner Herzog
Stars: Christian Bale, Steve Zahn, Jeremy Davies
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
John Judd ...
...
...
John Kishline ...
...
John Scherp ...
Elena Kenney ...
William Nero Jr. ...
...
...
Edit

Storyline

This is the story of the last few years of the notorious bank robber John Dillinger. He loved what he did and could imagine little else that would make him happier. Living openly in 1930s Chicago, he had the run of the city with little fear of reprisals from the authorities. It's there that he meets Billie Frechette with whom he falls deeply in love. In parallel we meet Melvin Purvis, the FBI agent who would eventually track Dillinger down. The FBI was is in its early days and Director J. Edgar Hoover was keen to promote the clean cut image that so dominated the organization through his lifetime. Purvis realizes that if he is going to get Dillinger, he will have to use street tactics and imports appropriate men with police training. Dillinger is eventually betrayed by an acquaintance who tells the authorities just where to find him on a given night. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

bank | fbi | 1930s | j. edgar hoover | gang | See more »

Taglines:

America's Most Wanted


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for gangster violence and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 July 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Enemigos públicos  »

Box Office

Budget:

$100,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,048,359 (UK) (10 July 2009)

Gross:

$97,030,725 (USA) (28 August 2009)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Although Billie Frenchette was never given "third degree" interrogation by the FBI as shown in the movie, the FBI agents did in fact perform similar tactics on Helen Nelson (the wife of Baby Face Nelson), Alvin Carpis, and a John Dillinger associate in Chicago named James Probasco. In the instance of Probasco, he ended up falling to his death from a upper-floor window. Offically, it is believed he committed suicide in order to avoid further interrogation. However, some historians believe that the FBI agents interrogating Probasco attempted to make him talk by hanging him out of a window and that the agents lost their grip on Probasco. See more »

Goofs

In the airplane scene, looking out of the window from the interior shot it seems that the plane is ascending. When we see the exterior shot of the plane it is descending. See more »

Quotes

[Agents Baum and Purvis are briefing the Chicago field agents]
Agent Carter Baum: According to the bank teller Barbara Patzke, this is John Dillinger's coat. It's made by Shragge-Quality out of St. Louis. Price: $35 dollars. Windproof, 32 ounce wool. Top stitching.
Melvin Purvis: [nods approvingly] Thank you, Agent Baum.
[Baum steps aside]
Melvin Purvis: Agents in our offices across the country are identifying every store in the United States that sold this overcoat. Then, we will cross-reference every Dillinger associate, in locales where that ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The title of the movie is not shown until the end credits. See more »


Soundtracks

Ballroom Bounce
(2009)
Written by Kevin Kaska
Performed by The Bruce Fowler Big Band
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
It is an entertaining backseat ride into the life of a country boy turned bank robber
1 July 2009 | by (www.SpicyMovieDogs.com) – See all my reviews

With Billie Holiday singing her heart out and the subtle details of cracked nail polish and $3 dresses, Public Enemies brings you into the era of the Great Depression without boring you with back stories and explanations.

It is an honest bio-pic with little factual variations outside of John Dillinger's romantic ambitions. It is an entertaining backseat ride into the life of a country boy turned bank robber in a time where America hated money-makers and banks. A time when people were starving and in need of a gun-toting, charismatic mid-western boy to stir things up a bit, one bank robbery at a time.

A Cast of Winning Players Director Michael Mann is known best for Heat, Collateral and Miami Vice. His attention to detail is known and it is said that he went above the call of duty in his research for this movie. Obviously he deemed it important to depict a true version of the Dillinger story with a bit of Hollywood sprinkled in to keep our attention. Johnny Depp is solid as the charismatic bank robber, adopting his mannerisms, speech and swagger and even the trademark smirk that is seen on all of Dillinger's photos. Christian Bale is perfect as Melvin Purvis, looking similar to the "G man" and confidently playing the role convincingly.

Digital Camera and No true sense of good and Bad The camera threw me off a bit switching from an old sepia toned look to a digital one during fights. At times it made you feel as if you were an observant on the street while other times it felt just like a movie. I wasn't sure why this was but I concluded that Mann wanted us to be there with Dillinger most of the time and at other times we are to observe from a distance. There was no great love felt for any of the dark heroes, the charismatic Dillinger was likable but I never felt concern for his well-being. The FBI agent in Purvis (Christian Bale) was the typical white knight archetype and was given little personality outside of this so I felt nothing for him either. The romance between Dillinger and Billie Frechette (Marion Cotillard) was interesting but felt clichéd (gangsters always have THAT chick in these movies) and just like real life that political blowhard J.Edgar Hoover (Billy Crudup) is the only real "bad guy" in the entire film.

Final Thoughts It felt like a different time period and the choreography of the gunfights were done well enough to keep me interested. With as colorful a crew as the boys who ran with John Dillinger, it would have been hard to direct a movie like this while keeping everyone relative. Men like Alvin Karpis (Giovanni Ribisi), Pretty Boy Floyd (Channing Tatum) and Baby Face Nelson (Stephen Graham) are given screen time, as well as Capone's number one do-boy Frank Nitti (Bill Camp). Still there was so much shown that you tend to lose your familiarity with Dillinger's quest for whatever it is he wanted and the hopelessness of his situation settles in after awhile. It is a good movie with no real emotional weight, just a "this is what happened" gloss to the entire thing with a sprinkling of charisma to top it off. If anything, you will go researching Dillinger and gang after the movie has piqued your interest.

www.SpicyMovieDogs.com


128 of 241 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What would be different if the events of the movie happened today? dmcreif
Worst cinematography in recent memory. backofthemind
Am I the only one who actually likes this movie? ritarams
Only the most ardent Mann fans will dispute this randywst16
I hated Dillinger and wanted him to die. What did I miss? iamdoingthat
Why was Carey Mulligan in this movie? rediguana
Discuss Public Enemies (2009) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page