The ninth collaboration between legendary pairing Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro and their first in over twenty years, mob drama The Irishman has been a long time coming. Based on the book I Heard You Paint Houses by true crime writer Charles Brandt, the plot centres around Frank Sheeran (De Niro), the eponymous WWII veteran turned hitman. From meeting mafia kingpin Russell Bufalino (Joe Pesci) to his complicated friendship with union leader Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino), the sprawling epic tracks the life and times of the mercilessly loyal footsoldier.Continue reading “Film review: The Irishman”
Directed by: Martin Scorsese
Starring: Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci
Release: November 2019
Religion has played a huge part in the illustrious career of Martin Scorsese, and his latest historical epic is the last piece in what is being referred to as his religious triptych. Co-writing the screenplay with past collaborator Jay Cocks, Silence is adapted from Shūsaku Endō’s 1966 novel of the same name, and focuses on two Portuguese Jesuit priests that aim to spread Christianity through Japan in the 17th century. When Sebastião Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Francisco Garupe (Adam Driver) hear a rumour that their mentor Father Cristóvão Ferreira (Liam Neeson) has committed apostasy after being tortured, they refuse to believe that the missionary would abandon his faith, and embark on a dangerous mission to track him down.Continue reading “DVD review: Silence”
Definition of FOURTH WALL
: an imaginary wall (as at the opening of a modern stage proscenium) that keeps performers from recognizing or directly addressing their audience
An old term related to audience participation in theatre but in film terms, the fourth wall is essentially the screen. Usually used for comic effect, here are my five favourite uses of the technique where a character disturbs the passive audience to speak directly to camera.
The Wolf of Wall Street
Director Martin Scorsese is no stranger to breaking the fourth wall and in his latest masterpiece, Leonardo DiCaprio regularly lets the audience in on his illegal operations. Playing the part of Wall Street stockbroker Jordan Belfort, he takes time out from his scamming to explain financial jargon and how much money he is making. How nice of him!
For my review, click here!
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Matthew Broderick tells it like it is in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, talking the audience through his foolproof plan to pull a sickie from school and have a day of fun. The cheeky-chappy style and delivery is copied by Saved by the Bell’s lovable rogue Zack Morris.
The list takes a darker turn onto the gritty cobbled streets of Edinburgh with Jon C. Baird’s adaptation of Irvine Welsh’s novel Filth. Alcoholic junkie cop Bruce Robertson is not a well man, physically or mentally, and we, as an audience, are complicit to his wicked mind games as he turns colleagues against each other and betrays his friends.
For my review, click here!
In Michael Haneke’s psychotic thriller Funny Games, the fourth wall is well and truly smashed when a character not only speaks into the camera but rewinds the film back a few minutes so that he can play it out his own way! The Austrian original version is excellent but if you don’t want subtitles, Haneke remade his own work for a wider English speaking audience with Boardwalk Empire star Michael Pitt holding the remote.