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Review: Kill the Irishman

"There's a bit o' good in every Irishman"...and in this slick gangster biopic
By PETER KEOUGH  |  March 16, 2011
2.0 2.0 Stars

Jonathan Hensleigh's slick bio-pic of '70s Cleveland gangster Danny Greene (Ray Stevenson) starts with a scene out of Casino and continues to draw from the Scorsese playlist throughout, except when it's clichéd and sentimental, as with its opening trope about two kids from the same tough neighborhood who go their separate ways - one into crime and the other into law enforcement. The latter is Joe (Val Kilmer), a Cleveland PD detective who provides clarifying voiceovers whenever the double crosses and body counts get too confusing. Danny didn't take shit from anyone, least of all the mafia, engaging it in a war that resulted in 36 bombings in one year alone. It gets to the point where "Boom!" seems like the punch line of some obscure recurring gag. But as Danny's old-lady neighbor puts it, there's a bit of good in every Irishman, and the same goes for this movie, what with the performances from Stevenson, Vincent D'Onofrio, and Christopher Walken.

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