Variety: Venice Film Review – Johnny Depp in Black Mass

“Johnny Depp does career-best work as notorious Boston gangster James ‘Whitey’ Bulger in Scott Cooper’s taut, elegantly understated crime drama.”

The icy blue eyes of notorious Boston crime boss James “Whitey” Bulger stare out from the screen in Scott Cooper’s “Black Mass” like the gaze of some confident jungle predator calmly lying in wait, holding his ground until the moment he moves in for the kill. And that same coolly calculated composure extends to every aspect of how the actor playing Bulger embodies the role, or rather disappears into it. But if Johnny Depp’s mesmerizing performance — a bracing return to form for the star after a series of critical and commercial misfires — is the chief selling point of “Black Mass,” there is much else to recommend this sober, sprawling, deeply engrossing evocation of Bulger’s South Boston fiefdom and his complex relationship with the FBI agent John Connolly, played with equally impressive skill by Joel Edgerton. Something of an anti-“The Departed” (which was partly inspired by the Bulger case), the movie has an intentionally muted, ’70s-style look and feel that may limit its appeal to the date-night multiplex crowd, but quality-starved adult moviegoers should flock to one of the fall’s first serious, awards-caliber attractions.
Read more

Deadline: Review – Big-Screen 3D Adventure Hits A New Peak


Set for its world premiere tonight as the opener of the Venice Film Festival, Everest is the kind of big-screen adventure picture Hollywood used to make regularly but seems to have forgotten about in the rush to comic book movies. This true story based on the ill-fated 1996 expeditions to the peak of the imposing Mount Everest has, as I say in my video review (click the link above), been brought to life with stunning clarity by director Baltasar Kormakur in a movie tailor-made for the big-screen glory of Imax and 3D. In fact, I don’t think I have ever seen a movie better suited for these formats. In other words folks, don’t watch this one on your keychain.

The movie should be a real player in the crafts categories of the Oscars, but I have a feeling it could go even further than that. Hopefully audiences will want to see this terrific film which represents the best of moviemaking at its most daunting.

Read more

Contact