Following the death of his employer and mentor, Bumpy Johnson, Frank Lucas establishes himself as the number one importer of heroin in the Harlem district of Manhattan. He does so by buying heroin directly from the source in South East Asia and he comes up with a unique way of importing the drugs into the United States. Partly based on a true story.
Quite a disappointed since it is really as much as you expect, but nothing new. Washington and Russell perform really well, so, as a characters movie, it works. It doesn't work at all as a biopic. Too much Hollywood on it.
A thoroughly entertaining 157 minutes! <em>'American Gangster'</em> delivers in every area it needs to. Enthralling premise, immaculate music, phenomenal casting and great pacing. I was surprised slightly with how it finishes, but it's far and away from a disappointing/underwhelming conclusion. Not much really needs to be said about Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe. They're exactly how you'd expect them to be, outstanding! Washington is fantastic as Frank, while Crowe is superb as Richie. You have to wait a while for their proper screen time together, but it's worth the time it takes. Away from the leads, you have a load of recognizable faces - I was literally that Rick Dalton meme for the first 45-60 mins! Chiwetel Ejiofor (Huey) and Josh Brolin (Trupo) have sizeable roles, though there's also appearances from Carla Gugino (Laurie), Cuba Gooding Jr. (Nicky), Idris Elba (Tango) and Norman Reedus (Norman). Excellent casting, that! I was expecting slow moments due to the run time, but there aren't any - at least in my opinion. As noted, the way it ends is a tad differently to how I would've predicted, but I still enjoyed it alongside the rest of the it. It might not be accurate on the real life Frank Lucas, but all that truly matters is does it excel as a film? Yes it does. Highly recommend!