For those interested, I discovered another Portland screening review of Public Enemies. For a very pleasant change, this one is extremely positive, if lightweight in content.
I went to see the screening of Public Enemies, on Wednesday night. The new film by Micheal Mann starring Johnny Depp and Christian Bale. The movie is about the “public enemy era” of the 1930’s during the great depression, and focuses on the famed gangster / bank robber John Dillinger, played by Depp, and the man sent to capture him Melvin Pervis, played by Bale. The movie also included a vague side story of how the FBI was formed into what it is today.
The film starts off in 1933 with the prison break that Dillinger planned and executed, almost flawlessly. The movie starts with some action and bloodshed which in my opinion is always a good way to get the movie started. We then follow the newly acquired Dillinger gang to a hide away.
At this point, Mann, introduces Pervis, while he is trying to apprehend a famed gangster “pretty boy” Floyd. After Pervis has done his job he is commissioned by J. Edger Hoover to head the man hunt for Dillinger. We also learn of the governments doubts about the FBI and J. Edger Hoover’s involvement.
The film continues to follow the chase for Dillinger, and his many exploits that include the famous photograph in which he puts his arm around the prosecuting attorney. His escape from jail with a gun he carved out of a bar of soap. It all ends outside the Biograph Theater (**MAJOR SPOILER ALERT**) where Pervis and his hired help shot and killed Dillinger in the alley next to the theater after this brothel associate gives him up in hopes to avoid deportation.
Micheal Mann has found his perfect blend of drama and action in this picture. As well as he combined his style of handy cam, and set shots. All and all, it was his best film yet. Johnny Depp gets more and more outstanding as an actor every film he makes. Christian Bale, is as he always is… fairly dull. (sorry for any Bale fans out there, I know, Bale was the bomb in Batman yo!… but still) There are tons of cameo’s from stars that you’ll recognize but can’t think of their names off the top of your heads.
I would be surprised if this film doesn’t make it’s run as a might contender for the best picture of the year in 2009. I would give it a 10/10