THE IRISHMAN:  Rated R – 3 hrs. 29 mins. – Hitting in theaters NOW and on Netflix November 27th

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 “Astoundedly crafted every step of the way!  Netflix is giving the Studios a run for their money again this year!” Kathy Kaiser, Matineechat.com

THE IRISHMAN:  Rated R – 3 hrs. 29 mins. – Hitting in theaters NOW and on Netflix November 27th

DIRECTOR:  Martin Scorsese

WRITERS:  Based on the book by Charles Brandt, Screenplay by Steven Zaillian 

STARRING:  Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, Ray Romano, Bobby Cannavale and Harvey Keitel

Based on the supposed true Story of his life, we meet the notorious about town Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro), working as a mobster for the Russell Bufalino’s (Joe Pesci) Crime family, and looking out for his friend and confidant, Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino) too.  Caught between his life as a mobster, and his beautiful family, filled with daughters that he truly loves, Frank finds as the years roll by, keeping Russell’s boys at bay, and keeping Hoffa’s mouth from setting off a firestorm, is becoming a full-time job.

When Hoffa manages to finally piss-off the wrong guys, Frank has no choice but to follow orders, and do what he’s told…and if what Frank decided to share later on in his life is really true, then we just may finally know what lead to the mysterious disappearance of Hoffa, back in 1975…

I give THE IRISHMAN a rating of MUST SEE ON THE BIG SCREEN!  We have been waiting quite a while for Netflix Studios most star-studded film to arrive, and now that it’s here, you most definitely will not be disappointed Scorsese manages yet again to make a Mobster movie for the ages, as whether you believe the story that Frank Sheeran shared while wasting away in a retirement home is true or not, this film will lead you to believe every inch of it!  DeNiro is superb, playing the Mobster/Teamster/Family man Frank Sheeran.  Pacino is even better in my eyes, playing the arrogant ruler of the Teamsters Union, Jimmy Hoffa.  And when you add in the superb performances too from Pesci, Romano, and Cannavale, you have a film filled with lots of Italians, that really know their stuff!  Even more astounding to me than the fabulous directing and acting throughout, is the way this film literally just flies by as you are viewing it, even though it comes in at 3 and ½ hours long.  I was also truly impressed by the digitalized de-aging techniques that were used to make these rather mature actors, look as if they were 30-something again.  Believe me when I tell you, from the extensive and very entertaining storyline, to the fabulous acting, to the flawless cinematography throughout, THE IRISHMAN is going to put Netflix at the top of heap come awards season again this year – as apparently snagging the nod for the Best Foreign Film last year with Roma, was just the tip of the iceberg.  So, make plans to head out to a theater near you throughout he next few weeks, as this is one film you have to catch on the big screen, long before you can tune it in on your small screen at home on Netflix, starting November 27th.

FREE FIRE – Rated R

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FREE FIRE – Rated R – 1 hr. 30 mins.

Starring Armie Hammer, Brie Larson, Sharlto Copley, Cillian Murphy, Sam Riley, Enzo Cilenti, Michael Smiley, Babou Ceesay, Noah Taylor and Jack Reynor

Written & Directed by Englishman Ben Wheatley (Executive Produced by film legend Martin Scorsese too) and set in 1970’s Boston, we meet a group of arms wranglers comprised of powerbroker Justine (Academy Award winner Brie Larson), Frank (Michael Smiley) Chris (Cillian Murphy), plus Franks super dumbass nephew Stevo (Sam Riley) and his unstable friend Bernie (Enzo Cilenti).

And what better place to make-a-deal on the much needed firearms than at a vacant warehouse, where South African born lead dealer Vern (Sharlto Copley), his side kick Martin (Babou Ceesay), body-guard Ord (Armie Hammer), friend Gordon (Noah Taylor) and John Denver loving and van driving Harry (Jack Reynor) are in place, and ready to make the exchange, and dash…

Seems pretty simple right? One group wants guns; the other group has the guns…make the exchange of guns for cash and everyone heads home, right?? Not exactly, as it seems that Harry and Stevo had a minor altercation just the night before, which reignites into a frenzy of epic proportions once they are in the same place, at the same time! And to make matters worse, it seems that both sides in this equation don’t trust the other side, and apparently they aren’t too fond and trusting of one another either…Sooooooo, once the gunfight ignites between everyone involved, one question remains… Will anyone make it out of this warehouse alive, and if they do…who will ultimately be the LAST MAN STANDING???

I give FREE FIRE a rating between MUST SEE ON THE BIG SCREEN and WAIT AND CATCH THIS FILM ON DVD.   If you want to experience 90 minutes of raw action, (yep, that’s right, this film is 90 minutes of non-stop gun fighting) amidst a barrage of some extraordinarily funny lines, and better than average acting along the way too, then by all means, head out to a theater near you this weekend to catch Wheatley’s latest film in big, cinematic fashion. But, if you aren’t intrigued by the synopsis I just gave, and don’t enjoy gunfights that last longer than any “back in the day” western I can ever remember, then you might want to wait and catch the performances of Hammer, Larson, Murphy, Copley and the rest the gang when this film hits on DVD. Just mark my words; Wheatley has managed to create an unconventional little film that will most certainly end up as a cult classic, regardless of how you decide to view it for the very first time!!

Kathy Kaiser

SILENCE – Rated R

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SILENCE – Rated R – 2 hrs. 41 mins.

Starring Andrew Garfield, Adam Drive and Liam Neeson

Based on the novel by Shûsaku Endô, Director Martin Scorsese puts his mark on the remake of the 1971 film by the same name, as we follow two young priests determined to spread the word of Christianity throughout 17th century Japan…this is SILENCE!

On a quest to find Father Cristóvão Ferreira, who has not returned from his missionary trip to Japan for quite some time, we meet young priests, Father Sebastião Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Francisco Garrpe (Adam Driver), determined to not only find Ferreira, but also to spread the good word to anyone who believes in Christianity in Japan, although it is forbidden!

Living in their young delusional minds, envisioning a Japan that will accept this foreign religion amongst its people, Rodrigues and Garrpe soon find that they are causing heartache, punishment, and even death to those who choose to follow them, and their religious beliefs.

Still in search of Ferreira, but finding themselves now also being imprisoned and tortured for their beliefs, Rodrigues and Garrpe may have to come to terms with the fact that their quest was ill-fated from the start…

I give SILENCE a rating between MUST SEE ON THE BIG SCREEN and WAIT AND CATCH THIS FILM ON DVD: Leave it to Martin Scorsese to take on a story of this magnitude, and bring it to life, even if it was 25 years in the making! From the incredible cinematography, to the picture perfect performances by Garfield, Drive and Neeson, SILENCE is one of those films that will stay with you long after you have the opportunity to view it. So why the in between rating?? Even though I was moved by many parts of this film along its way, I was also taken back by the extent of graphic violence I was forced to endure. I also had issues with the epic length of this film, wishing that it would have moved along more efficiently in its storytelling and visuals throughout as well. Many of the scenes throughout this film are obnoxiously redundant in their length, and presentation. It was as if it was becoming too torturous for me to view all of the extensive torture playing out on screen.   But, if you enjoy Scorsese’s style of filmmaking, and its epic feel, and if you enjoyed 1988’s THE LAST TEMPTATION OF CHRIST back in the day too, you may thoroughly enjoy his interpretation of this 17th century epic as well. But if watching a torturous film, in both length and content doesn’t sound very appealing, then you may want to catch SILENCE on the small screen, so if you want to, you can keep a lot of the torment in this film at bay…by just walking away, and returning when the scene has changed…

Kathy Kaiser