During the era of Prohibition in the United States, Federal Agent Eliot Ness sets out to stop ruthless Chicago gangster Al Capone, and because of rampant corruption, assembles a small, hand-picked team to help him.
Brian De Palma
Robert De Niro
In the midst of trying to legitimize his business dealings in New York City and Italy in 1979, aging Mafia Don Michael Corleone seeks to avow for his sins, while taking his nephew Vincent Mancini under his wing.
Serpico is a cop in the 1960s-early 1970s. Unlike all his colleagues, he refuses a share of the money that the cops routinely extort from local criminals. Nobody wants to work with Serpico, and he's in constant danger of being placed in life threatening positions by his "partners". Nothing seems to get done even when he goes to the highest of authorities. Despite the dangers he finds himself in, he still refuses to 'go with the flow', in the hope that one day, the truth will be known.Written by
Sidney Lumet was pleased with the cooperation of the NYPD, especially in light of the subject matter and the proximity in time to the actual events depicted in the movie. Two officers were directly assigned to the movie, and Lumet wondered what their reaction would be. "As soon as they saw the truth we were going for, how it was not a Hollywood version, they not only weren't a problem, they more actively helped," he noted. See more »
After throwing Corsaro against the wall in the squad room, Serpico begins searching him in front of his fellow coworkers. Just before he starts to search Corsaro's back pockets, the suspect's pants are still up and unblemished. The camera cuts away, then cuts back to the suspect's pants already torn with his buttcrack exposed before Serpico even starts his search. We then see Serpico start to rip and tear down Corsaro's slacks and drawers, thus exposing his crack. See more »
Captain, I think it's only fair to tell you, I've been to outside agencies, and I'm gonna go to more if I have to.
Capt. Insp. McClain:
What outside agencies? Holy mother of God! Frank, we wash our own laundry around here! You're going to be brought up on charges for this.
[they start to shout on top of each other]
Oh yeah? Yeah, I always thought so, but the reality is, sir, that *we do not wash our own laundry*! It just gets dirtier.
Capt. Insp. McClain:
Oh, you are in trouble, Serpico. You are in trouble!
I don't care if I'm in ...
[...] See more »
There is one Australian VHS version released through RCA Columbia Pictures Hoyts Home Video in the 1980's which had all profanity overdubbed with tamer language, as well as some scenes of sexuality/nudity. Subsequent releases on DVD are uncensored. See more »
Al Pacino dominates every scene he is in as Frank Serpico, a New York City policeman who feels that it is best to be honest and not stick out in public. He is a real believer in trying to turn the city around in the early 1970s, a time when crime was rampant all throughout. Unfortunately, it seems that practically everybody he works with, whether it is fellow cops or the captains and commissioners are all taking place in taking money from the gambling crooks they bring in. No one seems to have a problem with this, except Serpico. And when he decides to do something, he may get more of a fight from his fellow law-protectors than the criminals he is trying to bring down.
A year after breaking open in The Godfather, Al Pacino gives a gritty, tough performance as a man who knew what to do that was right and was determined not to let anything stop him. Pacino fits so naturally into this persona of anger, passion, love, and sincerity it is impossible to imagine anyone else in this role. With a strong leading performance, solid writing, and slick directing by master of setting director Sidney Lumet, Serpico ranks as one of the best cop movies and a shining testament to the goodness of one man despite all the corruption around him.
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