Behind the Curtain: Depp, as James “Whitey” Bulger, right, as he agrees to a deal with John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) to become an informant for the FBI helping them catch the notorious organized criminals Angiulo Brothers.
It’s safe to say Johnny Depp knows how to play a crime lord and knows how to do it well.
His role as ‘70s kingpin James “Whitey” Bulger was nothing short of terrifying and his fellow co-stars did not disappoint.
The gangster film gives a look at the true story of Bulger’s life led by a narration of his fellow gang members as they tell the FBI how Bulger gained his power in Boston.
The movie begins with Bulger ruling the streets of Boston, loved by those who know him and feared by those who don’t.
When approached by a childhood friend, and now FBI agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) he pressures Bulger into helping him capture the Angiulo Brothers who seem to be constantly sliding under police radar.
Not liking the idea of being a “rat,” Bulger initially refuses the offer, but once the Angiulo Brother kills one of Whitey’s Winter Hill gang members he agrees to be an informant, furthering his position with the FBI. This also gives Whitey full freedom to whatever he wants as long as he helps the FBI, with only one rule, no crime or killing.
Having his own agenda, Whitey breaks this rule. But before the FBI could pull the plug, they catch the Angiulo’s discussing criminal activities leading to their arrest.
This in turn allows Bulger’s empire to grow rapidly, leading to him eventually skip town when the FBI realizes everything he has done.
He was on America’s Most Wanted list for 12 years until he was finally found and arrested in Santa Monica, California after the police received an anonymous tip.
With his icey blue eyes, Depp’s performance was remarkable, making an incredible comeback from his recent comical misfires.
The cast was packed with big names like Benedict Cumberbatch who also gave a well-done performance, but the role of Bulger’s wife played by Dakota Johnson fell a bit flat.
Overall, the film was well made, well cast and a home run showing us that Johnny Depp is back and better than ever.
But, did we really need yet another gangster movie?