Gangs of New York

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(2002) ★★★★

Sky Atlantic: Thursday 17 September, 9pm

Having witnessed his Irish father’s death at the hands of 19th century Manhattan gang leader Daniel Day-Lewis, Leonardo DiCaprio grows up vowing vengeance. But when he infiltrates Day-Lewis’ Nativists, DiCaprio is torn between loathing and admiration for their charismatic leader. And thank God for Day-Lewis’ barnstorming, Bafta-winning presence as Bill the Butcher.

Handsomely staged on Cinecittà studio sets in Rome, Martin Scorsese’s hugely ambitious, wildly uneven but always compelling depiction of New York City’s bloody growing pains would be a much lesser film without the British actor’s towering presence. DiCaprio seems like a lightweight in comparison. And isn’t he just a little vain to be regarded as a serious actor? He takes a fearful beating which would leave most mortals marked and scarred for life.

Yet after a couple of soothing dabs from Cameron Diaz’s fair hand, DiCaprio wakes up looking good as new. No unsightly blemishes for that boy, it’s in his contract. Scorsese rates him, though, guiding him through The Aviator, Shutter Island and Marty’s long-awaited Oscar vindication, The Departed. And, to be fair, Leo’s pretty good in all of them.

Certificate: 18

Duration: 160min

IMDB – Gangs of New York

TMDB – Gangs of New York

Rotten Tomatoes – Gangs of New York

Other Showings Time & Date
Sky Atlantic Sunday, 20 September at 11:00PM