Donnie Brasco

When I was first assigned to see "Donnie Brasco" I instantly had an image
of another ruff and intense mobster movie. It has been a while since
Hollywood has attempted to do a mob related movie until now. "Donnie Brasco"
was released last Friday. This movie stars Al Pacino and Johnny Depp. The
movie is based on a true story about Joe Pistone and FBI agent who infiltrated
the New York mob ring. Johnny Depp takes the role of Pistone a.k.a. Donnie
Brasco. Donnie meets Lefty, played by Pacino. Lefty is a New York City mob
veteran, although he is very tired and wore out from the life he lives. He also
has a serious gambling problem, owes serious money to his bosses, has a son that
is a junkie and has been passed up for promotion in the ring several times, as
he is ready to get out of the game. This adds a lot to the character of Lefty.
Al Pacino did a wonderful job of presenting this character. Lefty runs into
Donnie and gets excited at the possibility of taking this young, vibrant kid
under hi s wings. Donnie is soon introduced to all the key players of the Mafia
as Lefty vouches his life on Donnie being a true mob player. Donnie picks up a
lot about the routines of this crime organization and is on his way to the top.

As all of these Mafia ties are being made, Brasco is faced with the
troubling situation brewing with his family. He has to spend so much time with
the mob that his family is left behind. His wife Maggie, played by Anne Heche,
is struggling each day trying to take care of the house, bills and the three
daughters while her husband is gone. He only gets to visit once every three
months during the years he is involved with this sting. The frustrations of
this creates serious hostility between the two.

Brasco is soon faced with another situation when one of the ring
leader\'s named Sunny decides to let Donnie run his mob ring down in Florida.
Lefty is devastated as his protégé passes him up and goes to the top of the
ring. Donnie is faced with several different conflicts between his loyalty to
Lefty, the demise of his family and the fact that he is an FBI agent and must
bring down this ring that has molded him into a player.

I enjoyed this movie tremendously. The acting by Pacino and Depp was
the key to the film. These two worked off of each other to a perfection. The
supporting mobsters played by Bruno Kirby and James Russo also help the film
with their stupid remarks and their brainless persona. This movie surprised me
in the amount of humor that was thrown in amongst the mobsters. At first, I
thought the comedy situations were out of place because of my idea of what a mob
movie should be, but I was wrong it added a lot to the entire feel of the movie.
Another aspect of this film that set it apart from other Mafia movies was the
focus on not the leaders of the ring, but the lower class mobsters. The film
was directed by Mike Newell who also directed "Four Weddings And A Funeral" and
"Into The West." He sums up the movie perfectly by saying "Donnie Brasco is
about two men who get caught in a conflict of loyalties."

I really did enjoy this movie, especially Al Pacino. I believe this is
one of the best movie he has done in a long time. The same can be said of
Johnny Depp and his acting.

All in all this was a good movie and I give it three roadrunners.

Category: Music and Movies