Gomorrah has officially ranked itself among the top mafia classics ever made, in my book. A film this visceral, realistic, and sobering is impossible not to enjoy.
Directed vividly by Matteo Garrone, this is one hell of a film following the lives of five different characters, all true to life and involved in the Camorra Mafia in their own ways. The script is boldly adapted from its original source "Gomorra", a brilliant piece of non-fiction written by Roberto Saviano, who was put under permanent police protection from the Camorra after receiving death threats for revealing their criminal activities. Whoa.
When you are adapting source material like that, you have to consider the danger and risk you're throwing yourself into. Matteo Garrone directs as if no one can stop him. He filmed in real life, Camorra-heavy locations in Naples and even discovered after filming that some of the extras were actual Camorra members. Jesus Christ.
Not only are these facts chilling themselves, but the film is an absolute masterpiece. The adapted screenplay written by Maurizio Braucci is highly effective and captures the realism and menace of the lives of Camorra criminals. And the adaptation seems to work out better in film format than the original book, which usually is not the case. I read the book myself before seeing the film and immensely enjoyed it, but after seeing the film it's almost as if the book was written solely to be formed into a movie. And a crime classic, at that.
As the dialogue is effective, the actors and extras are even more so. All unknown Italian actors (obviously) and as I mentioned before, actual Camorra members hanging out on set. That still gives me the chills. Each character is very well developed and has their own rich, unique storyline that will keep you involved and wondering what's going to happen next. Your eyes will be wide and your jaw will be dropped from start to finish.
To wrap things up, the cinematography is also extremely stunning and adds to the grit of the film's happenings. Phenomenal Direction and D.P. work, flawless editing, and all the extra goods. This film has it all.
This is a truly well-executed film. With 11,000 dollars, director Oren Peli absolutely nails what he is trying to accomplish: Building a ridiculous amount of suspense and fear with an extremely minuscule budget. I left this movie feeling physically and (especially) mentally shaken. The movie contains a very realistic set of characters in a highly plausible (and truly dreadful) situation, which makes it all the more frightening. I highly recommend viewing it in theatres, especially with a full audience. Trust me, it adds to the experience. Don't miss out.
"There are a lot of secrets in District 9". Indeed there are in this visually striking and highly political sci-fi action thriller, that pretty much came out of no where. (For me, at least.) The script is brilliant and each of the lead characters come included with a deep, rich persona that is incredible to witness develop. Also, I would expect to see much more of Sharlto Copley in the future, as this film should absolutely launch his acting career straight into space. Top-notch acting and writing mixed with impeccable CGI animation succeed with originality and imagination that sci-fi movies rarely display nowadays. A very welcome treat to close off the summer.