Black Mass is a movie that follows an Irish-American convicted murderer and former organized crime boss, Whitey Bulger, played by Johnny Depp. This film chronicles the real-life story of Bulger who became an FBI informant to assassinate people that were his enemies in the mafia. In some cases, Bulger was protected by the FBI despite his criminal atrocities.
First off, every performance in this movie was amazing. This was one of Depp’s best performances in a very long time, possibly in years. He plays a dark yet slightly comical character but still managed to have moments where he made my skin crawl. Depp pulls off this character and made me realize how terrible Bulger is. Personally, I find Depp’s performance quite refreshing after a long, dry spell mediocre movies, and enjoyed seeing him play a role that allows him to shine.
Another character that I found engaging was played by Joel Edgerton, who just came off a huge success with his performance in “The Gift.” I feel that this was hands down one of his best performances to date and hope to see more of him in the future. I found that not only the acting was good but that the cinematography was perfectly directed and well delivered. Every shot was setup intricately and was always enjoyable to watch.
However, this movie has glaring flaws. The parts of the story lacked emotion and was hard to be truly invested in the plot. This is a great movie with terrific performances, but there isn’t much to latch onto emotionally in this movie. This had much to do with the absence of a hero character that you could feel good about. Another film similar to “Black Mass” is the movie “Goodfellas”. It had no recognizable “good guy”, but had amazing dialogue that made the conversations and interactions thought provoking and exciting. Unfortunately “Black Mass” has scenes, although few, that were dragged down because of some non-intriguing conversations.
By far, this is not a bad film, it was one of my favorites this year, but there were small but blatant flaws that caused this movie to schlep down and lower its grade. With an A-list cast, interesting camera work, and true, but, different plot. “Black Mass” earns the respectable grade of a B. I wholeheartedly urge you to go and watch this movie for yourself, so be you own judge if you liked this movie or not.