Gomorrah

  • Year:2009
  • Rating:MA
  • Director:Matteo Garrone
  • Cast:Salvatore Abruzzese, Vincenzo Fabricino, Salvatore Ruocco, Simone Sacchettino
  • Release Date:May 14, 2009
  • Distributor:Madman
  • Running time:137 minutes
  • Film Worth:$14.50
  • FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

“…an unconventional and unmissable instant classic.”

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It would seem safe to think that, as far as mafia movies go, we've seen it all, from Francis Ford Coppola's grandiose The Godfather, to Sergio Leone's uncompromising Once Upon A Time In America, to Martin Scorsese's hyper-violent Goodfellas, and the delightfully mundane TV series The Sopranos.

There's nothing left to say, right? Wrong! Director Matteo Garrone's Gomorrah is unlike anything you've ever seen. Based on Roberto Saviano's non-fiction bestseller, the movie presents a disturbingly accurate portrait of the Camorra, an Italian crime organisation that flourished in the city of Naples, and is considered to be the oldest in Italy. Since the publishing of his novel, Saviano (who, while researching his book, went undercover and infiltrated Camorra clans) has received many death threats and now lives under constant police protection.

Director Garrone is not interested in giving the audience a beautiful cinematic experience, but rather to remain faithful to the grimness and significance of the source material. Gomorrah is as bleak and sober as the lives of the people that it portrays - it makes City Of God look like The Chronicles Of Narnia. Garrone takes the audience on a trip into the psyche of the characters, making their fears, frustrations and motivations palpable in all their sordid misery.

The stories that make up Gomorrah don't need to be embellished for dramatic purposes, and appropriately, Garrone's direction is as austere as it is effective. In spite of the violent nature of the film, the director is never gratuitously explicit - his biggest achievement is to slowly make audiences realise that what they're watching is more than just a movie.

Gomorrha transcends its medium and evidences humanity at its most despicable, and rates as an unconventional and unmissable instant classic.

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