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SUPA BAD-Intense, brooding and violent, October 12, 1999

Abel Ferrara, Christopher Walken,David Caruso,Laurence Fishburne,Victor Argo,Wesley Snipes,Janet Julian, Blu-ray - Wide Screen / DTS,LIONS GATE, Running Time: 01:46:00 ***Usually ships within 24 hours*** 20120503110028877
Abel Ferraras' "King of New York" is the story of recently parolled Frank White who decides to try to go straight. Kinda. The cast reads like a roll call of modern day screen bad asses: Christopher Walken, Dave Carruso, Larry Fishburne, Wesley Snipes, Steve Buscemi, Giancarlo Esposito, on and on. What I really liked about the film is the development of these characters. We've all seen Gangster movies so we can pretty much tell what's going to happen. But White's character seems determined to get a hospital built in his old neigborhood-no matter what the cost. He faces resistance from all sides: the Italian mob want's nothing to do with the drug dealing king, Asian gang leaders consider him too unstable to be a good business partner, there's rebellion in his own ranks and finally, the police aren't taking kindly to White's return to his old ways. You can feel the contempt and conflict coming off of the screen. Incredibly violent, profanity, with scenes of wanton...

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Abel Ferraras' "King of New York" is the story of recently parolled Frank White who decides to try to go straight. Kinda. The cast reads like a roll call of modern day screen bad asses: Christopher Walken, Dave Carruso, Larry Fishburne, Wesley Snipes, Steve Buscemi, Giancarlo Esposito, on and on. What I really liked about the film is the development of these characters. We've all seen Gangster movies so we can pretty much tell what's going to happen. But White's character seems determined to get a hospital built in his old neigborhood-no matter what the cost. He faces resistance from all sides: the Italian mob want's nothing to do with the drug dealing king, Asian gang leaders consider him too unstable to be a good business partner, there's rebellion in his own ranks and finally, the police aren't taking kindly to White's return to his old ways. You can feel the contempt and conflict coming off of the screen. Incredibly violent, profanity, with scenes of wanton...
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Some way into Abel Ferrara's 'King Of New York', two gangsters conspire in a small cinema showing F.W. Murnau's 1922 horror classic 'Nosferatu'. Playing the scene where the vampire disembarks his corpse- and rat-ridden ship docked in England, it has clear reference to Ferrara's protagonist, Frank White (Christopher Walken in one of cinema's great, mercurial performances), a drug-smuggler recently released from a long period in prison, hoping to reassert his local criminal power. White refers to his return as 'coming back from the dead', and Walken's long, haunted figure and dancer's movements have some of the aristocratic grace of a famous screen Dracula, Christopher Lee. Mostly seen at night, he gathers new recruits (fresh blood) around him to 'feed' on. One remarkable shot, after a prolonged sequence of speedy violence, has him lit so his eyes shine like some haunted undead; another has the camera following him through a railway station until it is stopped by bars - it can only...
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KING OF NEW YORK is, for my money, the most valuable (and the most underrated) film of the last 20 years. It is a homage to the classic American genre - the gangster fable - with the depth and subtext of a European art-movie. It's a precursor to urban crime thrillers like New Jack City and Menace II Society (Ferrara points out they first used a rap-score in 1982). An ode to drug-culture. A pitchblack satire of capitalism and its grotesque fallout. It's got a cast to die for, and a close-knit crew at the height of their powers.It's shot across an array of locations including Sing-Sing, Donald Trump's Plaza Hotel, and various crack-lanes; it weaves seamlessly between an original score, and the music of Vivaldi and Schooly D; the film is meticulously colour-coded (as pointed out by Nick Johnstone in his book) to add up to a cold critique of the red WHITE and blue, the all-American war-on-drugs; the tempo is expertly-managed, the movie simmers for a while then explodes into...
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