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Black Mass (2015)

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The true story of Whitey Bulger, the brother of a state senator and the most infamous violent criminal in the history of South Boston, who became an FBI informant to take down a Mafia family invading his turf.

Director:

Scott Cooper

Writers:

Mark Mallouk (screenplay), Jez Butterworth (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
874 ( 419)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Johnny Depp ... James 'Whitey' Bulger
Joel Edgerton ... John Connolly
Benedict Cumberbatch ... Billy Bulger
Dakota Johnson ... Lindsey Cyr
Kevin Bacon ... FBI Agent Charles McGuire
Peter Sarsgaard ... Brian Halloran
Jesse Plemons ... Kevin Weeks
Rory Cochrane ... Stephen Flemmi
David Harbour ... John Morris
Adam Scott ... FBI Agent Robert Fitzpatrick
Corey Stoll ... Fred Wyshak
Julianne Nicholson ... Marianne Connolly
W. Earl Brown ... John Martorano (as W Earl Brown)
Bill Camp ... John Callahan
Juno Temple ... Deborah Hussey
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Storyline

Based on a true story of James "Whitey" Bulger, an Irish Mob godfather and a FBI informant who had a "secret trading" deal with his brother, William "Billy" Bulger, a state senator and a Boston public figure, and John Connolly, an FBI agent. They planned to take down theft Italian mob and mafia in Boston, which went awry and things turned massively violent. When the credence for each other began fading out, drug dealing, murders, and extortion started to rise, and forced the FBI's Boston office to confirm that Whitey Bulger was one of the most notorious criminals in US history and also one of the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List criminals. Written by Gusde

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Based on the true story of one of the most notorious gangsters in U.S. history See more »

Genres:

Biography | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brutal violence, language throughout, some sexual references and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 September 2015 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pacto criminal See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$53,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$22,635,037, 20 September 2015, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$62,575,678

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$99,775,678
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Datasat | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kevin Bacon would later go on to portray Charles McGuire's successor Richard DesLauriers in Patriots Day (2016). See more »

Goofs

Al's Liquor in South Boston features a mural of Dropkick Murphys, a band that formed in 1996. The mural was created in summer 2000. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Kevin Weeks: Before we start, I want you to kow something. I'm not a rat. You understand? I want that on record before we start.
DEA Agent Eric Olsen: Okay. You are not a rat. And it's on record. Mr. Weeks, the charges against you, racketeering, extortion, kidnapping, and accomplice to murder, are very serious. Am I correct in stating that you are here today to make a deal with the federal government?
Kevin Weeks: Correct.
DEA Agent Eric Olsen: And am I correct in stating that you are going from trusted confidant to one of South Boston's most ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

As the actors are listed, pictures and footage of the real people they portrayed are shown. See more »

Connections

Featured in Half in the Bag: 2015 Re-Cap (So Far) (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

No Me Llores Más
Written by Willie Colón, Hector Lavoe (as Héctor Lavoe) and Kent Gomes
Performed by Willie Colón
Courtesy of Fania Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Boring, uninspired crime drama
20 September 2015 | by sfsknight03See all my reviews

I don't usually write reviews but I felt compelled to inform others about how awful this film was. And I want to prefice this by saying I love crime films and have seen the greats such as Goodfellas, the Godfather, and The Departed but this was just drivel.

Let's start with the acting: Johnny Depp plays Boston crime lord James "Whitey" Bulger and reveals virtually nothing about the character he plays aside from the violent actions he portrays. The supporting cast does nothing to make this a compelling story either with the exception of Joel Edgerton's John Connolly as a street-wise kid turned FBI agent loyal to Bulger's cause.

The pacing and dialogue are also the biggest culprits here. The film develops slowly leaving the watcher wondering if it will ever pick up to an emotional crescendo with only to find out the ride is as monotonous as your daily drive. Moreover, the dialogue feels like students taking turns reading out of a textbook. I know that the film is a biographic one but there's no need to have it feel as though you're reading a Wikipedia article.

Likewise, the musical score tries to underpin the uneasy feel of the movie but only works to put the viewer to sleep with its two tone rise and fall. None of the cinematography and shots of the scenes work to create anything worth capturing attention. There are shots of Southie that do convey the bleak outlook of Bulger's turf but they are few and far between as the film mostly focuses on the boring and uninspired dialogue and setting the actors are captured in such as living rooms, offices, dark bars, and car interiors.

If I was to summarize watching this film with an analogy I would describe it as eating and tasting a cardboard box.


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