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The story unfolds in 1860s lower Manhattan during a period of great unrest in America. With the Civil War underway, the country was torn apart and on the brink of chaos. For the lower-class inhabitants of New York City, a war was also raging closer to home. Their home was the Five Points, one of the poorest neighborhoods in America, where rival gangs fought continuously.
Crime Drama - This is an extremely violent and extremely bloody movie. And it's
not just isolated scenes. The entire movie is nearly a continuous
stream of violent scenes. It's about thieving street gangs fighting
each other in the slums of New York. Everything is very dirty and
corrupt. The previews imply there's romance between DiCaprio and
Diaz. There is but I doubt many women will find these scenes
PROFANITY: 5 F-words, 2 GD's, 1 S-word. Several others. SEX/NUDITY: Several lingering scenes of topless women. Some short sexual activity. VIOLENCE: The level of bloody violence is extreme. DRUGS/ALCOHOL: There's some drinking and smoking. Nothing to excess. ACTION: There's a big opening fight and a big ending fight and a little in between. COMEDY: Only a couple funny remarks.
The above rating is an average of the critic reviews below.
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Review Very Good "It begins, intimately, with an extreme close-up of eyes
wide open. It ends, intimately, with an extreme close-up of an eye slowly
shutting. Everything else in between is vast and hugely ambitious in Martin
Scorsese's magisterial, scrambled historical epic Gangs of New York.''
Review Very Good "All of this is a triumph for Scorsese, and yet I do not
think this film is in the first rank of his masterpieces. It is very good but
Review Very Good "Historians will pick apart Gangs for years. (With
most current movies, why bother?) The reason: For all its lack of breathing room
— it's a rare 3-hour movie that needs more — it realistically puts you into
the Civil War North as much as Gone With the Wind does with the
romantically idealized South.''
TV Guide OnlineFull
Review Average "Epic, meticulously researched and ultimately
disappointing, Martin Scorsese's bloody valentine to the birth of his beloved
city is less than the sum of its parts.''
Note: The rating
above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on
their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.
OPINION OVERVIEW The following is the original "What's Worth
Watching" write-up for this movie.
These are some very mixed opinions, with many of them being very low, which is what I predicted. Gangs of New York isn't a bad movie, it's just not the movie many will be expecting. If you go in knowing it's extremely violent and has virtually no romantic love story aspects, then you may find it to be entertaining. However, for most moviegoers these opinions say your probability of enjoying it isn't all that good.
Cinema Review Prediction: (before moviegoer opinions are collected)
The acting is superb. The set design is incredibly realistic. You have no trouble believing you are seeing New York in the mid 1800's. The story is very dramatic but I don't believe this is a movie most people will enjoy very much due to the extreme and constant violence. You just don't ever feel much for any of the characters. There are no heartwarming, feel-good moments. There's nothing but violence. If you're going because you want to be entertained, I would look elsewhere.
The story unfolds in 1860s lower
Manhattan during a period of great unrest in America. With the Civil War
underway, the country was torn apart and on the brink of chaos. For the
lower-class inhabitants of New York City, a war was also raging closer to home.
Their home was the Five Points, one of
the poorest neighborhoods in America, where rival gangs fought continuously for
control of the streets. An area of poverty and criminality between New York
harbor, the flourishing Wall Street business district, and lower Broadway (home
to P. T. Barnum's famous American museum), it was a magnet for underworld
In this time of lawlessness and the
rampant political corruption that filled the halls of city government, the film
follows the story of Amsterdam Vallon (LEONARDO DICAPRIO), a young
Irish-American immigrant. Released from prison after fifteen years, he returns
to the Five Points bent on revenge against William Cutting, a.k.a. Bill the
Butcher (DANIEL DAY-LEWIS), the powerful anti-immigrant gang leader who killed
Amsterdam's father. Amsterdam knows the first step toward accomplishing his
mission is to infiltrate Bill's inner circle. However, Amsterdam finds his
difficulties increasing when he meets Jenny Everdeane (CAMERON DIAZ), an
enigmatic pickpocket whose fierce independence and undeniable beauty fascinate
him. Yet Jenny has a past too, which unexpectedly complicates his plan.
Amsterdam's journey becomes a fight,
for both personal survival and to find a place for his people. The struggle
reaches a fevered crescendo during the 1863 Civil War Draft Riots - the most
explosive episode of urban unrest the American nation had yet seen.