KING OF NEW YORK from @arrowvideo
From now on nothing goes down unless I'm involved… You guys got fat while everybody starved on the street. Now it's my turn
First time watch and watching for “Post-80's Neo-Noir Week” week as part of the @letterboxd
Season Challenge 2018-19. Well this one crept up on me and blew me away – from no expectation to holy-fucking-shit in roughly 5 minutes. This must be one of the best crime dramas of modern cinema, how do more people not know about KING OF NEW YORK?
When Christopher Walken’s drug-pushing Frank White returns from prison to the streets of New York, he does so with the ambition to wipe out all his crime boss competition and share his wealth with the poor and lower classes. It only takes him a few hours of freedom to cause major across the city’s underworld, his name guarantees a high body count, and 3 local policemen make it their primary mission to catch Frank White for good. Lines of morality become blurred as we root for a heinous gangster who’s using his money to save derelict hospitals, and rally against 3 policemen who are stepping way outside the law to stop him
This film is most championed for Walken’s crazed vampiric performance as he mixes unhinged war-lord with angelic serenity, swaggering / floating through filth-soaked back alleys and diamond encrusted charity fundraisers alike. He manages to convey so much just through subtle facial expressions that the few moments of explosive energy mean that much more. Listen to any Abel Ferrara interview and his stuttering, drug-affected manner and you’d be forgiven for writing him off, but this film proves he is much more than a hack exploitation director. His self-admittedly stylised and exaggerated story tackles themes of class, wealth and politics to great impact, while still retaining an authenticity and the ability to entertain through thrill and shock. Supporting cast is insane too – Caruso, Fishburne, Buscemi, Snipes etc
For, Ferrara fans it’s well worth picking up this @arrowvideo
version of the movie as the disc comes with the awesome ABEL FERRARA: NOT GUILTY documentary which follows the eccentric, scrappy director as he shambles around NYC