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At Theaters: 9/6/2002 On Video: 2/18/2003
Rated: R Length: 1 hr. 48 min.
Internet: Web Site Movie ID: 409959
Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Inc.
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Notes: 
Storyline Heading
The murder investigation draws Vincent home to Long Beach, the self-proclaimed "City by the Sea," where the past has been waiting for him to return. In the course of his investigation, Vincent discovers that his own unresolved pain and failures as a father have deeply influenced Joey’s life and the destructive choices he has made.
DETAILED STORYLINE
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Movie Type (Genre) Heading
Drama - This slow-paced drama is aimed at older moviegoers, and indeed that is the audience most likely to enjoy this film. More prudish moviegoers may be turned off by the violence, and strong language, which makes the film inappropriate for young children.
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Cast and Crew Heading
Robert DeNiro SHOWTIME, THE SCORE, 15 MINUTES, MEN OF HONOR
Frances McDormand THE MAN WHO WASN'T THERE, ALMOST FAMOUS
James Franco SPIDER-MAN, WHATEVER IT TAKES
Eliza Dushku THE NEW GUY, BRING IT ON
William Forsythe DEUCE BIGALOW: MALE GIGOLO
George Dzunda INSTINCT, CRIMSON TIDE
Director: Michael Caton-Jones THIS BOY'S LIFE
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Production Notes Heading
About The Production
About The Location
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Content Heading
PROFANITY: Over 30 F-words, 19 S-words, 3 GD's, and a lot of others.
SEX/NUDITY: None.
VIOLENCE: Bloody shootings and fights.
DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Drug, alcohol, and tobacco use.
ACTION: None.
COMEDY: None.
DETAILED CONTENT
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Critic's Review Heading
Good

The above rating is an average of the critic reviews below.

(Close new window when finished with Full Reviews)

Entertainment Weekly   Full Review
Good "City by the Sea moves along with a quietude, a scruffy direct plainness that has long gone out of style. At least, it has on the big screen.''

James Berardinelli, Internet Critic  Full Review
Good "...But, until the closing moments, this is a motion picture of real character - a film that tells a compelling story in a way that raises issues and questions beyond what one expects from a genre picture.''

Roger Ebert  Full Review
Good "City by the Sea is not an extraordinary movie. In its workmanship it aspires not to be remarkable but to be well made, dependable, moving us because of the hurt in the hero's eyes.''

USA TODAY  Full Review
Good "It's a run-of-the-mill cop thriller but also a gripping family drama. It is in the moments spent untangling the threads of troubled relationships that the movie is at its best.''

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.

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Opinion Heading

Based on an Exit Polling of 133 Moviegoers

Ages Age Group
How
Many
Your Probability of
Enjoying This Movie
*
Would
Recommend
Movie To Friends
13-19Teens (M/F)
7
About 50/50
86%
20-29Yg Adults (M)
14
Fairly High
64%
20-29Yg Adults (F)
15
Fairly Low
67%
30+Adults (M)
40
Fairly High
78%
30+Adults (F)
57
Fairly High
79%
*Possible Ratings: Very High, High, Fairly High, About 50/50, Fairly Low, Low, Very Low.

About Our Opinions

Be sure to read the DETAILED OPINIONS
The positive and negative comments made by moviegoers are very
helpful when selecting a movie that's appropriate for you and your family.

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OPINION GRAPH

OPINION OVERVIEW
The following is the original "What's Worth Watching" write-up for this movie.

Moviegoer Opinions:

Around half enjoyed "City by the Sea." Most of the remaining half rated it as OK, but many didn't think much of it, rating it "Poor." The most common complaint was that it was slow, especially at the beginning. Also, many didn't like the ending because it left too many unanswered questions. One person said it just wasn't what he expected, which is apparently something many moviegoers felt.

I probably should have better explained in my prediction that this is a gritty, dark, true-to-life story that is sometimes depressing (which many complained about). There's really not much suspense or excitement except at the end.

If, after reading the above, you still feel "City by the Sea" is a movie you would enjoy, chances are good that you will indeed enjoy it. Everyone else should skip it or wait for the video.

Cinema Review Prediction: (before moviegoer opinions are collected)
If you enjoy police dramas I have no doubt that you will enjoy "City by the Sea." It's intense and well acted. The story is very dramatic and interesting. I found it entertaining even though I'm not a big fan of this type of movie. I have no problem recommending "City by the Sea" to all adults, but I feel it will be enjoyed most by fans of police dramas.


D ETAILED S TORYLINE
New York City homicide detective Vincent LaMarca (ROBERT De NIRO) has forged a long and distinguished career in law enforcement, making a name for himself as a man intensely committed to his work. But on his latest case, the stakes are higher for Vincent – the suspect he's investigating is his own son, Joey (JAMES FRANCO).

Vincent and Joey have been painfully estranged ever since Vincent divorced Joey's mother and left the decaying boardwalks of Long Beach, Long Island for the anonymity of Manhattan and a successful career with the NYPD. He lives his life in solitude, keeping his girlfriend (FRANCES McDORMAND) at arm's length. The closest relationship he maintains is with his partner, Reg (GEORGE DZUNDZA) – and Vincent makes sure that stops at the precinct door. As long as Vincent lives in the protection of the present, he doesn't have to deal with the pain of his past.

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