Movie Review: Stand Up Guys

I love me some gangster movies. Always have, always will. Even tripe like the Untouchables to greatness like Boardwalk Empire, there is just something about an era where men were men, and wearing a suit didn’t mean you were a banker, you might just be the most dangerous guy in the world. I think there is something old-world about the Mafia, where people had power only rivaled by the Caesars, and simply didn’t happen in the US after 1965. (Well Legally) The big two movies of Gangster life is of course, The Godfather series and Goodfellas, both cinematic masterpieces, and movies I should get around to eventually. but today I am going to review a movie that very well could be a play, or a stage performance.Today I present

Stand Up Guys
Stand Up Guys.
Ok, so Al Pacino (playing mild Al Pacino) is released from Prison after doing almost 30 years, and Christopher Walken picks him up from prison. Both gangsters are older than dirt, and Al is a bit upset that Walken basically has quit on life, as all he does is putter around his crappy apartment and go eat at a hole in the wall diner.Pacino isn’t happy about what has happened to Walken, and quickly figures out that the reason he lived through prison is the man he killed accidentally in a crossfire, who father is the local mob boss, and he wants Al to die the day he gets out. He wanted Al to serve every day of his sentance, then die as soon as he breathed free air, and he wanted his best friend to do it.

That is just an awesome setup.
Revenge is truly a dish best served Cold.

When Pacino figures this out, he and Walken have themselves a night out, a last night as it were, and Walken will kill him in the morning.
They move on to get their old wheelman out of prison, visit a whorehouse, and basically try to have Pacino enjoy life for one last night.

I’m not going to give you a point-by-point breakdown, this is just too good a movie. Stand Up Al and Walken

This movie centers on Walken and Pacino.
You know them, you love them, and its hard for either one to break out of that shell.
But the thing about it?
They do. You forget that its Pacino and Walken, and it becomes two old gangsters  trying to make it through the night.
I enjoyed the “Wheelman” second act, its enjoyable, but I almost wonder if we needed it. Julianna is typecast, I guess they are in Chicago, or wherever ER was filmed ( Was not a fan of Chicago Hope at the time, and I quit on ER when Anthony Edwards got killed and Noah went crack-baby.)
The wheelman sub-plot is also a good bit of fun, particularly when they are just sitting around- and I love his line about he just drives, when the pair goes after the other gang.

Discount Darryl Hannah
Discount Darryl Hannah

Overall, the movie works. I enjoy watching two older actors being old, and its not forced or silly like in Vegas, a movie that is almost a parody of itself. Here both men are old, and you can almost hear the knees creak as they walk and talk. Muscle memory is the last thing that goes, so as they try to pull off a last hit on a minor gang, have sex, and assault the final boss.
This is just a wonderful self-contained movie, that I enjoyed watching, and hopefully wont have to worry about a sequel ruining.

This is a movie you must see.Just find it on DVD or pay cable, and carve out an hour and a half away from the kids. Highest recommendation. (7 on the Scale)

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