Monday, 27 October 2008

Public Enemies

Public Enemies, to be released July 2009, is Michael Mann's next movie. Shooting has finished and is in post production. See the informative overview from the Los Angeles Times of what this 1930's gangster movie is going to partly be about.

You can see Jonny Depp, cast as Dillinger, in Public Enemies camera action here.

There is plenty of behind the scenes action on youtube too.

Public Enemies looks as though it is going to be another Michael Mann classic. Without wanting to be controversial, I do think that Collateral and Miami Vice, as fine films these are, were not as strong in characterization and sophisticated scripting as Heat and The Insider. However, looking at all the behind the scenes materials, the staged shootouts, the mix of locations and superb use of lighting I have a feeling Public Enemies is going to be an outstanding film that is heading for critical acclaim, with potential Oscar winning performances from both actors and crew. Of course, this is just a hunch from some grainy camcorder images filmed around corners and from public balconies (imagine Michael Mann filming on location below your home balcony!). We won't have any real idea until we see at least the official trailer, and of course the final film. Christian Bale was outstandingly introverted yet determined in the The Train to Yuma 3:10, and his partnership with Depp is akin to DeNiro and Pacino in terms of on screen presence, albeit with very different characteristics and style. Let's hope these two actors "connect" in the same way as Mann expects them to. It is finding that elusive "connection" that makes or breaks a film. Mann has increased the odds of having a powerful connection by bringing together Bale and Depp. I just hope Depp is sufficiently masculine enough to make Dillinger more than just some cheeky gangster.

Gangster movies have that potential for Oscar winning material - period costumes, noir lighting, Tommy Guns and old cars, old fashioned architecture - great props to light and play with. If I spot any significant news from Public Enemies I will post it! July 2009 will soon be here though, and I for one can't wait for another emotional rollercoaster ride. Let's hope Universal will allow it to run the time Mann wants it too - they cut Miami Vice short, depriving the audience of the much lauded power boat race. I hope Universal have learnt the important lesson - do not cut Michael Mann's edit!

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