Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Murder, Inc.

Directed by Burt Balaban and Stuart Rosenburg.
1960. Not Rated, 103 minutes.
Stuart Whitman
Peter Falk
May Britt
Henry Morgan

After making a name for themselves as talented killers on their home turf of Brownsville in Brooklyn, New York a ruthless gang that would come to be known as Murder, Inc. is hired by a nation-wide crime syndicate to carry out assassination. Yes, it’s based on a true story but no, hip hop fans, this has nothing to do with the record label headed by Irv Gotti. In fact, this is where he got the name. Over the years, it’s become largely forgotten but this is a ruthless gem that doesn’t blink and just gives it to you plain. Stuart Whitman gets top billing but Peter Falk is “the man” here. He’s wickedly grimy, psychotic and slyly intelligent. He’s definitely someone who makes you check to make sure you still have your watch after shaking hands with him. Falk is so good in this movie, he seems to leave a stench on the screen that permeates the movie. Whenever he left a room, I looked around my living room to make sure I still had all my valuables. Finally, the movie undercuts itself just a bit by narrating parts of the movie that could’ve been shown.

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