The true story of one of America's most violent and infamous gangsters, Whitey Bulger. Johnny Depp stars as Bulger, who was the brother of a state senator and was eventually convinced to wear a wire for the FBI to bring down the Italian mafia in Boston after they invaded his territory. Scott Cooper directs, with Mark Mallouk penning the screenplay based on Dick Lehr and Gerald O'Neill's 2001 best-seller Black Mass: The True Story of An Unholy Alliance Between The FBI and The Irish Mob. ~ Daniel Gelb, Rovi
Director: Scott Cooper
Cast: Johnny Depp, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jesse Plemons, Joel Edgerton
Release Date: Sep 18, 2015
Rated: R for brutal Violence, Language Throughout, Some Sexual References and Brief Drug Use
Runtime: 2 hr. 2 min.
Genres: Action/Adventure, Drama
Black Mass is an engaging gangster film that’s gripping enough to keep your attention for most of its 2 hour run time. Its greatest assets are it’s actors with Johnny Depp delivering some of his best work in years. Depp is fully committed to the role, losing himself into it easily. It’s a fascinating character study and Depp’s performance gives the audience a strong sense of what the real man was like, to a chilling degree. Depp will be getting a lot of positive returns for his work but Joel Edgerton is just as good playing the FBI agent who partners with Bulger. Edgerton is an incredibly talented actor who easy to overlook because he eases into his characters so well. His turn here is fantastic giving you a strong sense of why the character’s broken logic made sense to him ultimately leading him to his downfall. Benedict Cumberbatch is a strong supporting character even if it takes a moment for your mind to wrap around his Boston accent which is great but sounds strange coming out of his mouth. Sadly, he’s under used and his character is underdeveloped. Scott Cooper does solid work throughout, keeping a steady pace but he can’t quite overcome the film’s biggest drawback which is something totally out of his control. In the end, it’s a well worn story that doesn’t deliver any surprises. It’s a strong film all around but it’s been done countless times.