Al Pacino Weekend – Scarface (1983) Movie Review

Director: Brian De Palma

Writer: Oliver Stone (Screenplay)

Starring: Al Pacino, Steven Bauer, Michelle Pfeiffer, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Robert Loggia, Miriam Colon, F Murray Abraham

Plot: In 1980 Miami, a determined Cuban immigrant takes over a drug cartel and succumbs to greed.


Tagline – He was Tony Montana. The world will remember him by another name…SCARFACE.

Runtime: 2 Horus 50 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Gangster 101

Story: Scarface starts when Cuban immigrant Tony Montana (Pacino) leave Cuba to start a life in America, he isn’t happy by starting with the everyday labour jobs, before getting a chance to work with his friend Manny (Bauer) who draws him into the world of drugs, a place where Tony thrives.

As Tony learns the business, he looks to make his move to become the biggest drug lord in the country, with deals everywhere, taking out the competition if they ever get in his way.

Thoughts on Scarface

Characters – Tony Montana is a Cuban immigrant that went to Miami to start a new life, though he didn’t want to work for it, well not in the legal way, he gets put an entry into the drug world and he gets turn by the power he could get by becoming a drug lord, being straight with the people he deals with and going above the people he doesn’t trust heads. Manny is the best friend of Tony who has always helped him in Miami, he is always by his side as he rises up the industry never questioning him until he starts getting out of control with his decisions. Elvira is the beautiful woman that is with a drug lord that Tony eliminates, she is being forced to stay with Tony, where she is drawn to the drugs that he is suppling, which is the main reason she stays around. Gina is the little sister of Tony’s she is always being protected by him, as he doesn’t like anybody getting close to her.

PerformancesAl Pacino is wonderful in the leading role, showing how easily he can morph into any gangster figure and make a huge impact on screen. We do see most of the supporting cast working very well through the film, getting their moment to shine opposite Pacino.

StoryThe story here follows Tony Montana as he goes from Cuban immigrant to drug lord in Miami, slowly starting to lose control of the situation as more enemies appear looking to take the throne he has taken. When it comes to the drug lord films, we do always know how they go, somebody gets in at the bottom and finds a way to rise to the top, to become one of the most dangerous men in the business, even if this means that the police and other enemies have come out of the woodwork to take his position. The way that Tony slowly becomes more corrupt with power is the highlight of the storytelling process in this film.

CrimeThe crime world we enter shows how Tony would do anything to get the power in the world, he gets put through a traumatic experience with his first visit to the world and after that he doesn’t care about the violence he leaves behind him.

SettingsThe film shows us the different times that Tony has had, from his first arrival to his mansion he claims as his own after he gets all the money in the world.


Scene of the Movie – Say Hello, to my little friend.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – It is too long, we have a lot that we don’t need to see.

Final Thoughts This is one of the strongest gangster movies, showing the drug lords rise to power and just how much it changes him on the way up.

Overall: One of the Best.

ABC Film Challenge – Action – Y – Double Team (1997)

For the ABC Challenge this is under Y because of the character Yaz.

Director: Hark Tsui

Writer: Don Jakoby, Paul Mones (Screenplay)

Starring: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dennis Rodman, Micky Rourke, Paul Freeman, Natacha Lindinger, Valeria Cavalli

 

Plot: An international spy teams up with an arms dealer to escape from a penal colony and rescue his family from a terrorist.


Tagline – He’s a one-man arsenal… with enough voltage to rock the free world.

Runtime: 1 Hour 33 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Van Damme Film

 

Story: Double Team starts as former spy Jack Quinn (Van Damme) is talked out of retirement to capture the only man he couldn’t capture, Stavros (Rourke), he turns to arms dealer Yaz (Rodman) for the weapons required.

When the mission to take down Stavros goes wrong, Jack finds himself in a penal colony, with the rest of the world believing he is dead, at the colony Jack must join the rest of the community who assist in dealing with anti-terrorist actions. Jack notices messages in Stavros latest attacks which sees him finding a way to escape the penal colony in an attempt to protect his family from the mad man.

 

Thoughts on Double Team

 

Characters – Jack Quinn is an international spy that went into retirement to start a family, he is drawn out for one final job to take down known terrorist, which sees him hesitant at the crucial moment leading to a mistake which sees him arrested. Jack must use all of his skills to escape and save his family. Yaz is an arms dealer that gets everything people want without facing any problems, he works with Jack once he knows what is at stake and the money he could earn. Stavros is the terrorist that has been running chaos over the world, he ends up becoming personal against Jack and he doesn’t care how many people he kills. Goldsmythe is a member of the penal colony, he teaches Jack the rules of the colony.

PerformancesJean-Claude Van Damme is always the guy you can watch in action films, he doesn’t put a foot wrong through the film and works well with Dennis Rodman. Dennis Rodman might have come from sporting background, but his flamboyant style comes through in this film. Mickey Rourke makes for a fun villain, he looks like he is enjoying this role. Paul Freeman does play an interesting character, we would have liked to see more from his character though.

StoryThe story follows an international spy that finds his most formidable enemy after an error in the latest mission gives him the upper hand. This story does fall into everything we know from the action genre, it is simple to follow for the two sides at battle. The interesting side of the story comes from the island which has the former spies and enemies of the state, which investigate terrorist incidents, this island is seemingly just some add story which doesn’t seem to play a major impact in the final story of the film. the world we enter is a fun story that fits the Van Damme style of action.

Action/Comedy/Sci-FiThe action is fight sequences that we know we can trust Van Damme to make feel brutal, Dennis Rodman brings the comedy even if it is added into the action that he is involved in. the sci-fi side of the film comes from what we see in the penal colony that Jack finds himself in.

SettingsThe film does take Jack around the world in different location, with the final sequence in the coliseum in Rome.


Scene of the Movie –
The final fight.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Not enough of the penal colony.

Final ThoughtsTypical action film here, it is easy to watch as long as you switch you brain off and enjoy.

 

Overall: Simple & entertaining.

Rating