A great deal more jumbled and poorly constructed that I had anticipated - but Scorsese's future as an influential filmmaker does shine through despite the overwhelming flaws. Points for the soundtrack, the key performances, and the gritty cinematography flooded with neon lights and dark shadows.
re-rating. I already liked it a lot, now less because of the clichés that the time extended and that would prove to be a constant in this filmmaker work, who usually disguises it with a hysterical energy. See De Niro's character and acting: unbearable. Nevertheless still prevails a beautiful capacity to film a city, New York in the 70's, that with "Taxi Driver" would become mythological.
There are a lot of things I like about this movie (the themes, DeNiro, Keitel), a lot of things I hate (the lighting, the sound, Amy Robinson, the over use of music), and a lot of things that I am indifferent to (the story, the rest of the ensemble, the direction). To sum it up, the film suggests greatly of Scorsese's talent here and there, but doesn't quite come together. Still not that bad though.
The grittiest of Scorsese's gangster pictures, which seems to add a whole new level of "authenticity" to everything (whether it actually is authentic is anyone's guess). He would better it in the future, but this one still retains much of the power it had upon its initial release.
Great as a signpost for Scorsese's oeuvre (auteur features) and development of 'lowlife' crime (unlike 'The Godfather') in an authentic Italianamerican diasporic context. However, the script is shoddy, repetitive and overacted. As a result, a suspension of one's disbelief is near impossible. The flair of form is definitely present, but one Scorsese does not hone until 'Taxi Driver', 'Raging Bull' and 'Goodfellas'.
One of Scorsese's most personal films is also one of his best. Setting up his style early on this is an energetic film with powerful performances. Would make a great double feature with Who's That Knocking At My Door?