Scott Cooper’s biographical film based on the life James ‘Whitey’ Bolger and starring Johnny Depp in a role that will probably win him the Academy Award is a violent, highly disturbing, and all together compelling and brilliant piece of filmmaking. The screenplay by Mark Mallouk and Jez Butterworth balances so many characters brilliantly, that it’s easy to understand why so many famous actors wanted to be and are in this picture. I was particularly impressed with Julianne Nicholson (who should be nominated as Best Supporting Actress), Joel Edgerton, Benedict Cumberbatch, Peter Sarsgaard, Corey Stoll (always brilliant) and W. Earl Brown among many superb actors. This story details the adult life of one of America’s most notorious mass murderers, who while an FBI informant, helped to take down the Italian Mafia in Boston, thus eliminating his competition, while running the Irish Mafia to murderous effect. A brilliant, frightening, compelling and engrossing motion picture, I’d recommend this film to only an adult audience who is not overly sensitive to acts of extreme violence and psychotic behavior by one that could only be described as having been cut from the same cloth as Adolph Hitler and Joseph Stalin.
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