The Irishman [2019] ★★★½

Martin Scorsese has done it again. Decades of experience run through his latest cinematic masterpiece “The Irishman”. So what better way to celebrate than to bring along Robert DeNiro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci and an incredible supporting cast that includes Harvey Keitel, Ray Romano, Anna Paquin, Bobby Cannavale and Jesse Plemons? “The Irishman” is an epic gangster saga, 210 minutes long, beautifully shot, masterfully directed, and perfectly acted. Need I say more? And yet on the surface, this is a simple story of a mob hitman (DeNiro) who recalls his time with his life-long friend, Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino, almost unrecognizable). CGI wizardry makes all these actors (now in their 70’s) look in their 40’s and 50’s again. It’s an incredible thing to witness, but it wouldn’t mean a damn thing if it weren’t so masterfully orchestrated by Scorsese himself. With such gangster classics as “GoodFellas” and “Casino”, Scorsese brings his A game to yet another classic in the making. Issues of sin, loyalty and regret resonate in most of his films, and “The Irishman” is no exception. To dig deeper is to reveal more, which I refuse to do here. But I’ll say that in a world of sequels and reboots, “The Irishman” is a gift from one of the most influential directors of all time. No film buff would pass up the chance to witness all these legendary actors in a film directed by Martin Fucking Scorsese. Will we ever see anything like this again? I have no idea. But one thing’s for sure: to miss out on this film would be the biggest sin you’ll ever commit. It’s one of the year’s very best films and a strong Oscar contender.

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