Saturday, 13 October 2012
Killing Them Softly 
Killing Them Softly, Andrew Dominik’s fine follow-up to the outstanding Western The Assassination of Jesse James…, is a compelling and grimy crime drama, and, in turn, a powerful indictment on American politics and economy. The once mythical American Dream is crumbling, and the repercussions of this seemingly irreversible downslide are felt even by mobsters and hired killers. Brad Pitt, in another of his fine star turns, has played the role of Jackie Cogan, a professional enforcer, who has been given the dirty task of unraveling the robbing of a poker joint. Markie (Ray Liotta), the manager of that joint, and who had once robbed it successfully, becomes the easy fall guy despite being innocent. However, it soon becomes apparent that two young guys were actually behind the audacious deal – and thereon, it becomes a matter of eliminating the mastermind behind the job. Pitt exuded both urban cool and a strongly palpable sense of world-weariness, and a highly notable cameo was put in by Liotta too. The best performance, however, came from James Gandolfini as Mickey, a once sought after hitman, but now a loquacious, jittery, unreliable and washed-out man somehow still out of prison, and his veering conversations with Cogan (reminiscent of Pulp Fiction) provided some of the most memorable moments of this slow-burning character study and darkly funny political satire. Though a few scenes came out as tad gimmicky and the director’s political stand was clearly to the right of the fence, the end product was an astutely directed and brilliantly written end product filled with caustic sociopolitical commentaries - made more so by Obama's drone-like voice perennially filling the background.
Director: Andrew Dominik
Genre: Drama/Crime Drama/Gangster Film/Political Drama