The Irishman Review by Sputnik

Hit man Frank Sheeran looks back at the secrets he kept as a loyal member of the Bufalino crime family in this acclaimed film from Martin Scorsese.

There are some excellent scenes like the scene where Hoffa and Tony meet in Florida or the “What kind of fish” scene or the scenes where Frank keeps relaying between Russell and Hoffa.

Robert De Niro is very good as Frank Sheeran but even with the de-aging vfx he still looked old especially in scenes where he was supposed to be young or had to be physical. His best scenes were the phone scenes – where he is talking to Hoffa or the scene where he talks to Hoffa’s wife Jo.

Al Pacino is excellent as Jim Hoffa. He will most probably be nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor and has a good chance of winning too. He has the meatiest role in the movie and this is one of his best performances in a long time.

Joe Pesci is excellent as Russell Bufalino. He plays such a calm and composed gangster who hardly displays any emotion but is yet very dangerous. One can’t help wonder if it is his past performances in movies like Goodfellas that is causing you to think he is so dangerous. He will most probably be nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor and has a good chance of winning too.

Ray Romano is good as Bill Bufalino. Anna Paquin is good as Peggy Sheeran in a small role. Lucy Gallina is very good as young Peggy. Stephen Graham is very good as Tony Provenzano. Harvey Keitel is good as Angelo Bruno in a small role. Jesse Plemons is good as Chuckie. Domenick Lombardozzi is good as Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno. The rest of the cast was good too.

Martin Scorsese’s direction is good but the movie is very leisurely paced and is quite long at almost 3 and a half hours long. The movie could have been edited by quite a bit. Screenplay is somewhat flawed as an old Frank is narrating the entire story but there is also a car drive scene going on in parallel which doesn’t make any sense. The de-aging vfx doesn’t really work as you can’t even really tell what age they are supposed to be because they still look old when they were supposed to be young.

Even with the flaws the movie is a must watch just for the performances of the three greats – Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Joe Pesci.

Highly Recommended

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3 Comments
  1. cr7 4 months ago

    I made a comment on the de-aging bit on fb . Niro never really looked really young . Pesci calling him kid was funny .Another problem was Niro although was playing 1 30+ guy at the beginning his boy language was of a 80 years old. if you see the scene where Niro beats the shop owner with his daughter .The bit looks funny due to his awkward body movement. It gets easy on the eyes after a while. Niro was terrific when he was playing older.

    • Author
      sputnik 4 months ago

      Agree with you. Read similar comments on reddit.

      I had to google to find out what age Frank was supposed to be in the beginning as De Niro still looked old. They did such a big PR on the de-aging bit but it has been done better in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and Captain America: The First Avenger.

      Recently I watched Captain America: The First Avenger in which Chris Evans is a short skinny guy in the beginning. I thought they used a body double for the body but looks like they did all with vfx. Link

      They should have gone with same kind of vfx here. With De Niro having been in the movies since the 70s they could have gone for his looks from his early 70s movies.

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