Carlito’s Way

Year: 1993
Director: Brian De Palma
Writer: David Koepp
Cast: Al Pacino, Sean Penn, Penelope Ann Miller, John Leguizamo, Luis Guzman, James Rebhorn, Viggo Mortenson
A lesser look at criminal life than both Pacino and De Palma have given us before, but just like pizza and oral sex, it's very hard for both artists to make a bad movie.

Pacino is Carlito, a confident, expressive Puerto Rican criminal who gets out of the joint and wants to go straight. But despite getting himself started with some cash (taken from a drug deal gone wrong) and taking over a nightclub in order to get together enough money to start living his dream he finds himself drawn helplessly back in, thanks to old rivalries, his talent for making new rivalries, and his old acquaintances – both friend and enemy – determined for him to occupy his former position as a drug kingpin.

He just wants to leave while he can, taking the woman he left for prison (Miller) with him and living a simpler life. But life's never simple at the top, and with De Palma's style and Pacino's talent for owning every scene, as well as some great support parts by the staple Latino actors of today (Leguizamo, Guzman etc), it's a great story well told. Not dissimilar enough to Scarface to make too much of an impression, however.

In this case, showing the last scene first and blowing the whole thing is maybe not the best idea.

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