Over-ripe. I don't want to be too tough on Martin Scorsese but he seems to have thrown everything he had at this film with the hope that it would dazzle. There are numerous tracking shots through very expensive sets (1860s New York City recreated at Cinecitta in Rome), there are brand name actors (Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Day Lewis, Cameron Diaz), there are well-known character actors (Jim Broadbent, John C. Reilly, Brendan Gleeson, Liam Neeson, even David Hemmings), there is music by Howard Shore (and U2 over the end credits), there is cinematography by Michael Ballhaus (who worked with Fassbinder, and there is the editing by Thelma Schoonmaker (as usual) and there is the astounding production design by Dante Ferretti. And yet, and yet, it is over-ripe and probably over-long. Sure, there is a lot of money being splashed about and it shows: the film looks gorgeous and the various stylistic flairs are commendable. However, there may just be too much of everything. The story that sees DiCaprio leaving the juvenile prison to revenge the death of his father (Neeson) at the hands of Bill the Butcher (Day Lewis), the crime lord of Five Points, feels flat. Perhaps it is Leonardo's delivery (in voice-over narration) or his too-earnest acting that deadens things? Cameron Diaz feels somehow miscast as a pickpocket love interest - has she been in a period film before? Of course, Day Lewis commands the screen and all of the supporting cast are great. So, it may just be the palpable effort being put into everything, the preponderance of slow-motion, rock'em-sock'em, battles to a grungy beat that feel rather cringe-worthy (and/or immediately dated), adding to the over-the-toppishness of it all, with Scorsese (and the Weinsteins) yearning to be appreciated for their impressiveness. In the end, it's a curio.