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Gangs of New York (2002)

Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Day-Lewis, more...
Director: Martin Scorsese, Martin Scorsese
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Studio: Miramax
Genre: Costume Drama/Period Piece, Crime, Quest, Revenge
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: English
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The violent rise of gangland power in New York City at a time of massive political corruption and the city's evolution into a cultural melting pot set the stage for this lavish historical epic, which director Martin Scorsese finally brought to the screen almost 30 years after he first began to plan the project. In 1846, as waves of Irish immigrants poured into the New York neighborhood of Five Points, a number of citizens of British and Dutch heritage who were born in the United States began making an open display of their resentment toward the new arrivals. William Cutting (Daniel Day-Lewis), better known as "Bill the Butcher" for his deadly skill with a knife, bands his fellow "Native Americans" into a gang to take on the Irish immigrants; the immigrants in turn form a gang of their own, "The Dead Rabbits," organized by Priest Vallon (Liam Neeson). After an especially bloody clash between the Natives and the Rabbits leaves Vallon dead, his son goes missing; the boy ends up in a brutal reform school before returning to the Five Points in 1862 as Amsterdam (Leonardo DiCaprio). Now a strapping adult who has learned how to fight, Amsterdam has come to seek vengeance against Bill the Butcher, whose underworld control of the Five Points through violence and intimidation dovetails with the open corruption of New York politician "Boss" Tweed (Jim Broadbent). Amsterdam gradually penetrates Bill the Butcher's inner circle, and he soon becomes his trusted assistant. Amsterdam also finds himself falling for Jenny Everdeane (Cameron Diaz), a beautiful but street-smart thief who was once involved with Bill. Amsterdam is learning a great deal from Bill, but before he can turn the tables on the man who killed his father, Amsterdam's true identity is exposed, even though he has concealed it from nearly everyone, including Jenny. Gangs Of New York was the first film in two years from actor Leonardo DiCaprio; ironically, it was at one time scheduled to open on the same day as Catch Me if You Can, the Steven Spielberg project that DiCaprio began filming immediately after Gangs wrapped. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

This disc contains Part I of the feature.

GreenCine Member Ratings

Gangs of New York (pt.1) (Disc 1 of 2) (2002)
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5.91 (289 votes)
Gangs of New York (pt.2 & Bonus Features) (Disc 2 of 2) (2002)
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5.93 (148 votes)

GreenCine Member Reviews

Gangs a disappointment by terrance April 28, 2004 - 11:02 AM PDT
3 out of 4 members found this review helpful
Gangs of New York is a disappointment, and left me wondering what the big deal was all about. The bonus features on the DVD are decent, making sense of the history on which the movie is based. Daniel Day Lewis' performance is fantastic. The sets and costumes are also respectable. Other than that, the story is predictable and paper thin, and the acting mediocre. The experience was reminiscent of another DiCaprio blockbuster--Titanic. What separates Titanic from Gangs, however, is that Titanic is a always a great time, and never takes itself too seriously. One is left waiting for something a little more substantial from Gangs. In the end, though, the movie is as thin as the pulp fiction upon which it is based. Perhaps this was Scorcese's point. Nevertheless, the movie never really explains why you should care what happens to the rival factions of the Five Points. The worst part, however, is a technical failure. For no apparent reason, the movie is split between two DVDs. Given the manner in which we receive movies from Greencine, we did not receive the second disk until two days after we watched the first. And the first disk ends at a most illogical point--in the middle of a sex scene between DiCaprio and Diaz! Go figure.

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