Title: Killing Them Softly
Directed by: Andrew Dominik
Starring: Brad Pitt, Ray Liotta, James Gandolfini, Richard Jenkins, Sam Shepard, Scoot McNairy
Running time: 98 minutes, Rated R, Available on DVD and Ultraviolet
Special Features: The Making of Killing Me Softly featurette & Deleted Scenes
A couple of dumb crooks decide to rob a mob run card game which causes the criminal economy to collapse. A gunman (Brad Pitt) is hired to take out those involved to restore order.
With a fantastic cast like this, I was disappointed in how slow and boring the story played out. The cinematography and editing were gorgeous, but the long heavy dialogue made me kind of twiddle my thumbs until something actually happened.
The deleted scenes really added to the storyline and I honestly think if left in place would’ve made the film flow better., even though it was mostly more heavy dialogue. Brad Pitt is phenomenal as always. His character Cogan is a professional, though somewhat tired of those who don’t perform up to his rules and standards; I see a lot of myself in his character as will many people. Ray Liotta plays a great pathetic mob whipping boy. His scenes are absolutely brutal. James Gandolfini does a great job as Mickey, the other hitman, however his character is so frustrating because he’s more interested in getting drunk and having hookers lined up than doing his job. I felt like a regretful boss watching a slacker employee during his scenes.
I wasn’t sure why director Andrew Dominik played clips of president Obama talk about the economy and his change campaign except to compare the mob’s economic collapse to the country’s own, but to me it seemed like a lame hate letter to the president. Yeah the economy’s in the toilet, thanks for reminding us all. However it does prove a point that without regulation, things are going to continue as it is. We need someone to step in, take out a few unnecessary people and restore order. For that I can’t give this film a death sentence.
I wanted to like this film so much, but it didn’t live up to my expectations. The acting was great, but poorly executed. No pun intended.
Reviewed by: JM Willis
Total Rating: C