Billy Bathgate (1991)


“I’m not his girl, he’s my gangster. ” – Drew Preston

Number of Times Seen – 1 (14 Mar 2019)

Brief Synopsis – The protege of a mobster during the 1930’s learns all about business and love in a very dangerous world.

My Take on it – As a fan of gangster films like The Godfather (1972), The Godfather Part II (1974), Once Upon a Time in America (1984) and Goodfellas (1990), I was hoping that this film would be on the same level.

Unfortunately, this is a really boring and mediocre gangster film that doesn’t even come close to being as gripping or entertaining as the films mentioned earlier.

The characters all feel very bland and none of the reach the level of feeling gritty or threatening enough as one would expect from a film like this and instead come across as seeming much more comical due to the way they perform their roles.

Even having Dustin Hoffman and Nicole Kidman in key roles doesn’t help make this film any more interesting to watch and it’s actually quite disappointing seeing them in such bad roles.

The plot moves along at a really slow and deliberate pace and fails to really find an anchor along the way which makes the story feel even stranger and more distant.

Clearly, the best thing in this film is Bruce Willis, who unfortunately isn’t given enough to do and his lack of screen time also doesn’t help his character to make an even larger impact of everything that goes on.

Bottom Line – Pretty mediocre gangster film.  None of the characters seem threatening or gritty enough and it’s quite hard to take it all seriously. Even with the likes of Kidman and Hoffman in this film, it doesn’t manage to make this bland story feel any more interesting. The plot moves along at a really slow pace and doesn’t manage to find its anchor which causes the whole story to seem even weirder.  The best thing in this film is Willis, but his character doesn’t have enough screen time to really make much of an impact on things regardless.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Then Disney head Jeffrey Katzenberg opted to produce this gangster epic instead of Warren Beatty’s Bugsy (1991) as he figured Beatty’s film was too expensive at forty million dollars. This movie ultimately came in at fifty million dollars, and grossed a mere fifteen million dollars during its American release. (From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)

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2 thoughts on “Billy Bathgate (1991)

  1. Pingback: Movies Reviewed Index A-Z | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1991 | MovieRob

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