Monument Ave. (1998) Poster

(1998)

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the code of silence
Ouchywawa113626520 March 2004
I grew up in this town of Charlestown a very strong irish neighborhood people here call themselves townies. The movie Monument Ave. is about the code of silence this town went through. Its very much like it but there were many more murders and alot more police arrests. Boston wanted to break the Irish Catholic clout in Charlestown and open the town up to new cultures, it never happened but since 2000 the town is only 93% Irish-Townie catholic. Monument Ave. was a very good movie and it explained what it was like here but it was much more violent. Charlestown was and still is a very dangerous town. Like in the movie brothers were killing brothers and people killing each other knowing that people would not tell that they did this, sex and drugs was involved in this alot too. Racism and Loyalty and doing inappropriate things like robbing, shooting, stabbing fighting, drinking etc. was a big thing here to. Kids around Charlestown (Townies) made a book about this called The Piece of Peace. There was 149 murders during the code of silence in Charlestown. Monument Ave. is a good explanation of what happened here. Thats what it was really like. Not like "Southie" which is nothing compared to Charlestown. But Monument Ave. was an exellent movie!
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Monument Avenue really works with it's fine acting and directing
jonpar7 August 2001
Monument Avenue is a familiar story that has been done before. However, this film really works due to the fine acting and directing. Ted Demme does an outstanding job developing the characters through his his long and sometimes drawn out dialogue scenes. The cast of Dennis Leary and Famke Janssen are extremely convincing and really make this film better than most of it's kind. Perhaps the small, almost cameo roles played by stars Billy Crudup, Martin Sheen and Jeanne Tripplehorn are what really make this film worth seeing. This is a perfect example of how good directing and acting can make a big difference on a common and somewhat predictable script.
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Above average study of small time Irish American thieves.
Infofreak2 October 2002
'Noose' (a.k.a. 'Snitch') is a movie that sneaks up on you. I stumbled across it almost by accident and watched it mainly because of the cast. The late Ted Demme directed, and personally I enjoyed this more than his better known 'Blow'. It contains a few dull spots but overall, it's a pretty interesting and effective look at small time crooks and their attitudes towards family and loyalty. Denis Leary once again proves he has some genuine talent as an actor, not just as a comedian. He basically makes this movie, though Ian Hart ('Backbeat') is also very good. Leary's co-star in 'Jesus Son' Billy Crudup appears in a small supporting role. It's a pity they didn't share more on screen time together because they make a memorable duo, as anyone who has seen 'Jesus Son' will agree. Colm Meaney ('Con Air') makes an intimidating bad guy, and Famke Janssen ('X-Men') is not only astonishingly beautiful but she is also believable as a troubled local caught between Leary and Meaney. It was also good to see the highly underrated John Diehl ('Motorama') as one of Leary's buddies and Martin Sheen ('Badlands') has a nice turn as a frustrated local cop. The cast here is sometimes better than the occasionally predictable script, but on the whole this movie is worth watching. Above average.
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8/10
A good film about thugs
PersianPlaya40815 July 2006
The chronicles of soldier level (the lowest level of thugs in the mafia) of the Irish mob gang is directed well by Demme. Although its not flashy, it tells a semi-simple story in a natural and realistic manner. Leary does well in the lead as Bobby O Grady who is a member in Jackie's(Meaney) gang but things go bad when Jackie the boss kills one of Bobby's friends. This film is written well by Mike Armstrong and Denis Leary (uncredited according to IMDb). I liked how Demme went about it, much different from other films i saw of his which were "Blow", "Life", although in some ways i could see similarities between this and his 96' film "Beautiful Girls". After viewing this, i think that Demme was not a bad director, of course not on the level of his uncle Jonathan Demme. Anyhow this film good, if u like mafia or movies about thugs (i do) then u will like this. IMDb rating: 6.3 my rating: 8/10
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8/10
Great Character Study of Small Time Criminals
Jakealope11 August 2005
I think this movie was much better than others in this genre, like "Mean Streets" or much ballyhooed and similar location, "Mystic River". The characters and dialog are A1, Dennis Leary really impressed me. Colm Meaney was truly a meaney and not his Star Trek O'Brien nice guy non-com role. It was more character than plot driven and is lean on the violence, so shoot 'em up freaks will be disappointed. I borrowed this from the library cause I never remembered this one when it debuted cause it had no publicity. Truly a gem in this genre and won't disappoint you. It has a great insight into the Irish Boston working class world without exploiting it or lapsing into sentimentality.
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Billy Bulger, This is your BROTHER, Whitey!!!!
alicecbr27 November 2000
From the current FBI's 10 Most Wanted List, we have a paralleling movie. As I write this, the Boston Police Dept., State Police and FBI stand indicted as co-conspirators in keeping Whitey Bulger out of the hands of the law. In Charlestown, the code of silence is slowly being broken as more Irish wake up to the fact that mobsterism is for the 'boids'.

Yet this movie really awakens you to how insidious the silly hi-jinks of youth (e.g., causing all the car alarms on the street to go off at one time) can really be. These kids then move on up into guilt by association, and slowly get rubbed out by the head mobster they have admired, and who even has the gall to pay for the funerals of those he kills/has killed. It's going on right now, folks, right here in Boston....but just not as much.

When the facts are in about Whitey Bulger, No. 1 guy on the FBI's most wanted , whose brother is chancellor of the Univ. of Ma. and formerly president of the Ma. Senate, you'll see a lot more parallels from this movie. The only logic test it failed was, "How could those parents NOT know their son and his buddies were sniffing coke in their home?"

This show is ALMOST a documentary of current life in south Boston. As someone with Scotch-Irish ancestry, I think of the Raytheon engineer whose mother took her husband's life insurance and moved to Stoughton from this Irish ghetto ....and marvel at his escape from the degraded lives portrayed here. See it. Take your teen-age kids to see it. Better than Sunday school.
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8/10
A great movie about real life
mystic8014 September 1999
Truly one of the best independent films I've seen in a long time. Monument Ave is about one man struggling to maintain his loyalty to a vindictive crime boss or to his own principles as a man. The film gives a true to life look at working class Boston and some of the situations that people are in. Denis Leary uses his Boston personality in this well made drama. Among excellent performances is Colm Meaney as the nasty boss, Ian Hart as Leary's friend, and Famke Janssen as the boss' girlfriend.
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4/10
These guys are losers
pogue2 December 1998
While the film did a good job of showing that these guys never matured beyond 14 year old punks, I had absolutely no sympathy for their characters. They all got what they deserved, with the exception of their Irish cousin.
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7/10
A Surprisingly good drama
MisterWhiplash23 August 2000
I liked this film because it had some good performances and a(even though not truly seen until a half hour into the movie) good plot. And, it is the second time for me (the first was Good Will Hunting) to see a look at Southey (the south side of Boston). Denis Leary teams up once again with director Ted Demme (Denis Leary's No Cure for Cancer and Lock 'N' Load and the Ref) and Photographer Adam Kimmel in a look at a confined, yet wild, group of Irish hoods who, while are racist and drugged up, are also loyal and sometimes funny in the bar sense. Not exactly for everyone, but for fans of the stars, or for people from Southey, it is a great glance. A-
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10/10
"This ain't West Roxbury."
Steve Flynn28 May 2002
Indeed it's not. One of Denis Leary finer performances, Monument Ave. accurately captures the "code of silence" attitude that ran through Charlestown for so many years. Its contains many small touches that distinguish this film from similar tough Irish hood films, like Southie. Look for Cam (kick his ass Sea Bass!) Neely in a brief but amusing cameo.
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8/10
In Spain is called Código de Lealtad (Loyalty code) or Noose
Jaime_Fernandez10 September 2001
Ted Demme is a director with a lot of fans, but most of them know him only for one of his films (Blow, Beautiful girls or this Snitch). I think there is nobody who loves his entire work and that's because every movie is different and they have not much contact points among them. Snitch (or whatever is the real title) is a good movie, but it has a tiny problem: you know what is to happen, unavoidably. A group of Irish living in the typical neighborhood where a man makes the rules. Everything goes ahead and never changes. The only possible change comes when someone in the group feels that his own world is falling apart and then... the end.

There is no need to be a genius to know what comes later, because we have seen it many, many times. But there is a single thing that makes this movie different (and that's why I am writing about it): the cast. The real Irish origin of most of the actors makes the movie specially realistic. That accent that is almost impossible to understand and that way of walking and even of drinking is really well filmed by Ted Demme. For once, you can believe you are between a group of Irish that have not found a place in the United States. The film doesn't pretend to be critic with the political system, because it shows just a small neighborhood where even the policemen are Irish.

The way of filming Snitch makes us to think that all the characters are living in a kind of prison and they can't leave it but dead. No one moves from those dirty and dark streets.

Both things (actors and filming) are really different from other films about the same topic. The problem is that nobody is to pay much attention to this movie, because the story is too much typical. At the moment, in Spain it has been almost unnoticed.
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Good Dark Movie With An Excellent Ear For Dialogue
jmcc-223 May 1999
This is definitely a dark movie but it is also one with an amazing dialogue and excellent acting. Many movies these days will trim back the amount of foul language in an effort to attract the sensitive types. Noose/Monument Avenue is one where the dialogue is authentic and you get the plain unvarnished truth. Perhaps that may be too much for the Politically Correct but I doubt if you'd get many of them in the Boston of Noose. The characters are so believable that you begin to wonder if you know people like this.
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9/10
Rough and Real
RED-388 February 1999
Denis Leary shows us he's an extremely talented actor when given the right role and a good script. Being from the Boston area doesn't hurt either. The movie shows just how trapped he was in his "business" and blind to its violence. Take it from a Bostonian, there's no sugar coating on this one. If you like modern mob movies, see this film. You won't be disappointed.
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7/10
Worth seeing
Lucian-420 August 1999
Dennis Leary is really great in this movie. I was surprised to see him do such a convincing job. The movie seems kind of unfinished, and a slightly bigger budget probably would have helped. A little too much of the f-word in some seems. Still it was entertaining and touching. And Greg Dulli of the Afghan Whigs was really cool as coke-dealer/hitman Shang.
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8/10
A well-paced look at a slice of Boston usually not portrayed
PinnHed16 July 1999
A surprisingly blunt and direct look at the type of Bostonians you don't want to meet in the alley behind "Cheers". The characters played out convincingly, Leary being a local I'm sure helped. Misconception: This movie is not about, or in Southie (of "Good Will Hunting" fame). It is in Charlestown (Chucktown to townies). Monument Ave. runs straight up to...Bunker Hill Monument. However, the film is flawed. The camera work does not add to the movie, Martin Sheen does not add grit or realism, and the climax is overplayed. The set-up, however, is gripping and well-done. The underbelly of these tight Boston communities is exposed to the viewer. Plus, look for the cameos by Boston comedic legend Lenny Clarke ("Laroquette Show" I think) and Greg Dulli ("Afghan Whigs", highly underrated Ohio band).
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8/10
much better than one would expect
ceolaf13 June 1999
Dennis Leary is wonderful in this film. Not a flaw in his performance, and we are talking about serious acting in a real drama here. The movie is well written, allowing him to show how well he can do this.

It's a movie about trust and betrayal among a community where they only trust each other, never outsiders, and they are themselves the criminals (small time). Betrayal, however, is barely different from trust. And the code of silence rules absolutely.

Bobby O'Grady (Leary) knows that it just doesn't work. He just can't see it, and knows that he is a part of it.

Why is it is such a good movie? Authenticity. It feels real. Leary doesn't go over the top, no one does. It looks right, and feels right.

In the end, they don't make it easy. This is a story that can't end well, even if you try to put all the pieces together such that it looks like a happy ending. So, they don't force it. It ends as it has to.

Worth seeing.
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10/10
One of the most overlooked flicks of recent years
tony-mastrogiorgio14 February 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Eventually, Monument Ave will get its due. It is a terrifically realized slice of hoodlum life, a story about a near escape from a cycle of hopeless violence and dis pear. Dennis Leary proved he could act right here.

It also suggests, along with the better-than-it-had-a-right-to-be Beautiful Girl, that Ted Demme was just tapping the surface of potentially great career when he died. He and Leary may have combined on a handful of classics if Demme had lived.

As much as I like The Departed and Mystic River, this is the movie that really captures the gangster life in South Boston. If you like movies like Force of Evil, Friends of Eddie Coyle and other hard-edged crime pictures, check it out.
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8/10
A True Beantown Story
the_skunkwerks13 June 2007
what can i say,I'm a born & raised Boston boy.I'm from the opposite side of the city from where this film takes place. the area, Charleston dose have a code of silence cloaking the hoods.similar to the way the southie-OC projects feel,eve after the winter hill gang has become less visible.

i don't live in Boston anymore,but i remember home vividly.

i caught monument ave in the theater,in Copley sq.-Boston when it came into the theaters.riveted the the screen i was.

the lifestyle the local hooligan lives is not one of irresponsibility.all his action are seen,maybe not by law enforcement.but by other hoods.they live with many vices,expensive booze-hard drugs & cheap women.and the nice girls they find usually get hurt. a criminals code of conduct is the standard they live by,and its always evolving to meet the situation.

friends become foe's. the misguided become martyrs. and life go's on.

watch this film,and understand that this is how many men live their life.
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9/10
good movie
bluenick8121 November 2006
I saw this the other night on one of the movie channels our cable company has. At first, I was a bit uncertain as to whether or not it was worth my time watching it, but I gave it a chance any how. It didn't take long though for me to realize that I had stumbled onto a rather good movie. Even though I may have missed a few minutes of the very beginning, I found it very easy to get drawn into the movie. It wasn't overly difficult for me to imagine some of the characters as people I know, as people I can relate to. That being said, most of the people I'm around all the time don't make a habit of going around and shooting people. It did add a rather interesting element to the story of the movie of having law enforcement officials who tended to look the other way when things went down in the neighborhood. However, corruption happens as the newspapers tell us everyday. It was a very interesting movie, and one I found my self unable to walk away from after I began watching. The ending was unique, and given the violent nature of the demise of many of the main characters, a fitting end. When all is said and done, it's a good movie, and one I would gladly watch many times again.
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9/10
Great Movie, Incredible director
MMcMahon-52 May 2006
First off...Ted Demme was in my opinion one of the most talented directors of his era. This film is top notch in performance, environment, the shots of Boston ( Tobin Bridge, Bunker Hill ) just add to the atmosphere which Demme has created. Dennis Leary proves once again that his talent lies far beyond comedy. Its in the after affect of the violence which is major element in the film that Leary and the rest of the cast shines. The music is so well placed for this film, it saturates the scenes with emotion. Emotion, which is a major element of this film is what drives Leary's character throughout the film. Depressing to a point, yet in the end you feel that perhaps Bobby (Leary) has done whats nessecary. I myself felt that If was in the situation his character was placed in I would act the same. If you enjoy his character in Rescue Me, you should see his performance here.
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6/10
A nice drama but perhaps a little too conventional...
youaredoingitwrong21 December 2004
Warning: Spoilers
When I first saw Noose (a.k.a. Snitch), I thought it was going to be another one of those 'gangsta' style movies where newbie mobster has a big brother and that big brother has a boss and that boss doesn't like the newbie... Well I was right, but the style of how's it's done adds some spice.

This is an average movie though the acting can be considered very good most of the movie...

The ending is also quite disappointing because it leaves no questions behind and nothing to talk about... It is done in the most clichéd of ways. It could've delivered a lot more than that.
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Leary's so cool...
jptully23 April 1999
This movie could've easily been a total mess, but Denis Leary holds it together very well. You can't take your eyes off him when he's on the screen -- there's a scene in a cab when he reminded me A LOT of Jimmy Cagney -- he's just that intense. Actually, I had a lot of fun trying to figure out which Leary pal would make the next appearance -- Greg Dulli of the Afghan Whigs plays a small role as a killer, while former Bruins star Cam Neely has a cool cameo as well. And I was surprised to find out that "Mouse" was played by Ian Hart, who did great as John Lennon in "Backbeat". But after all is said and done, it's Denis Leary that captures your attention. He can handle leads, Hollywood.
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5/10
Yawn....
Andrew-49 February 1999
This was a thoroughly average film that wasted every actor in it. Leary was indeed wonderful as was the rest of the cast but the movie was long, tedious and incredibly predictable. There is no plot - which is fine, since the movie tries to be a character piece but it fails. Instead of this watch Sweet Hereafter or Exotica.
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9/10
A powerful, moving experience; Leary is unforgettable
kefka-229 October 1998
Okay, I'll state loudly and up-front that Denis Leary gives the best performance of the year in "Monument Ave.". Sure, other actors have been more flamboyant, cried louder and appeared on more magazine covers (y'know, 'box-office babies'), but using only a glance, Mr. Leary quietly conveys an inner anguish and rage that I've seldom seen equaled on film. However, Mr. Leary's performance isn't the only reason to see this film while it is still available. All performances, especially Famke Janssen and Billy Crudup, are award-worthy, and the direction and settings evoke a bleak despair and hopelessnesss seldom encountered in today's 'dumb and dumber' environment. This is a great piece of work - congratulations to all involved.
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10/10
Best of The Year
DrZone23 October 1998
Tragic and beautiful in its story. After this and Good Will Hunting the main message is don't live in South Boston. Monument is the best film I have seen this year. A man's decision of whether he should do the honorable thing or if he will remain in his predicament for the rest of his life is so moving and inspired that the film actually changed me. The ending caught me by surprise but after it occurred I thought that it made perfect sense, and it wasn't a truly noble thing and it doesn't have that feel either. A Monumental movie.
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