The Yards (2000)



Critic Consensus: Featuring strong performances and direction, The Yards is a richly textured crime thriller with an authentic feel.

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Movie Info

An ex-con struggles to make a clean life for himself, but his job in a Queens, New York subway rail repair yard embroils him in corruption and murder.
R (for language, violence and a scene of sexuality)
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:

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Mark Wahlberg
as Leo Handler
Joaquin Phoenix
as Willie Gutierrez
Charlize Theron
as Erica Stoltz
James Caan
as Frank Olchin
Ellen Burstyn
as Val Handler
Faye Dunaway
as Kitty Olchin
Victor Argo
as Paul Lazarides
Tony Musante
as Seymour Korman
Steve Lawrence
as Arthur Mydanick
Andrew Davoli
as Raymond Price
Chad Aaron
as Bernard Stoltz
Tomás Milian
as Manuel Sequiera
Robert Montano
as Hector Gallardo
Victor Arnold
as Albert Granada
Louis Guss
as Nathan Grodner
Joe Lisi
as Elliot
David Zayas
as Officer Jerry Rifkin
Joseph Ragno
as Parole Officer
Jose Soto
as Orderly
John Tormey
as Contract Officer
Jack A. O'Connell
as Sal Disipio
Dan Grimaldi
as Executive One
Garry Patore
as Detective Tommasino
Ron Brice
as Detective Boulett
Gene Canfield
as Queensborough Policeman
Keith Hernandez
as Baseball Celebrity
Allan Houston
as Basketball Celebrity
Andi Shrem
as Belva
Joe Dimare
as Dante
Barry Wetcher
as Young Doctor
Oscar Colon
as Well Dressed Man
Jace Kent
as Young Italian Man
Doug Barron
as Doctor
Floyd Resnick
as Hospital Cop
Chris Edwards
as Police Officer
Raymond Seiden
as Police Officer
Annika Pergament
as Reporter
John Elsen
as Officer No. 1
Douglas Crosby
as Officer No. 2
Scott Nicholson
as Policeman No. 1
Kim Merritt
as Todd's Girlfriend
Erin Walls
as Dante's Girlfriend
Tyree Simpson
as Doorman
Peter Vallone
as Councilman
Irwin Gray
as Laywer
Denise Traficanti
as Secretary
Roma Torre
as News Anchor No. 1
Louis Dodley
as News Anchor No. 2
Ernie Anastos
as News Anchor No. 3
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Critic Reviews for The Yards

All Critics (95) | Top Critics (33)

An On the Waterfront wannabe, directed with a heavy portentousness that smothers the drama in a thick sauce of self-importance.

Full Review… | August 4, 2008
Top Critic

I can't remember when a film so well-acted and so well-rendered visually was also so oppressive to sit through.

Full Review… | April 26, 2007
New York Observer
Top Critic

A sensitive, intelligent and ambitious variation on the traditional going-straight story.

Full Review… | June 23, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Remarkable for the way in which every character has more than one side.

December 31, 1999
New York Post
Top Critic

A rare and often quite good try at making a thriller with real people and believable contemporary backgrounds.

December 31, 1999
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

Gray balances the hugeness of the canvas and the occasional broadness of his strokes with spare, scrupulous detail in the individual characterizations.

December 31, 1999
Village Voice
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Yards

There's nothing more dangerous than an innocent man. Great Film! "The Yards" invites you to taste corruption and to witness an imposed morality and then slyly allows you to resolve its escalating entanglements. The acting by the ensemble cast is outstanding. All the players capture the essence of the New York middle class gestalt beautifully. Mark Wahlberg delivers a somber but resolute character trapped in a vortex of graft and corruption. His performance is understated yet powerful. James Caan is one of the best at playing the small-time racketeer and he nails it again with his portrayal of the dirty dealing supplier. Joaquin Phoenix also shines as Willie, giving him a macho personality and the ability to rationalize any act according to his own code of morality. The cast includes Faye Dunaway, Ellen Burstyn and Charlize Theron in strong supporting roles. Nothing else to say, simply watch it whenever you have the chance. You won't be disappointed. In the rail yards of Queens, contractors repair and rebuild the city's subway cars. These contracts are lucrative, so graft and corruption are rife. When Leo Handler gets out of prison, he finds his aunt married to Frank Olchin, one of the big contractors; he's battling with a minority-owned firm for contracts. Willie Gutierrez, Leo's best friend, is Frank's bag man and heads a crew of midnight saboteurs who ruin the work of the Puerto Rican-owned firm. Leo needs a job, so Willie pays him to be his back-up. Then things go badly wrong one night, a cop IDs Leo, and everyone now wants him out of the picture. Besides his ailing mom and his cousin Erica, to whom can Leo turn?

Manu Gino
Manu Gino

Super Reviewer

Bored the hell out of me. Was not that bad, I guess, if you like these type of crime family stories, but really wasn't in the mood to watch it and it failed to grab my attention. Dark and dingy in the filming, too. Good cast, acting is fine.

Nicki Marie
Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

This movie started out a little slow, but it got interesting quickly enough. I am really starting to become an fan of Joaquin Phoenix. I enjoy watching him act. Really hope he decides to act again. Mark Wahlberg was great. Once the story gets going it holds your attention. Really liked the movie and its action. Thought everyone was great. Little weirded out with Mark and Charlize relationship since they are suppose to be cousins in the movie. But it explains it later on in the movie. But all in all a really good movie.


Super Reviewer

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