Black Mass tells the true story of James "Whitey" Bulger- the head of the Irish Mob in Boston in the late 70's. He was also the older brother of Senator Billy Bulger (Benedict Cumberbatch who does a Boston accent convincingly enough, it was just weird for me to hear him talk like that). He ends up making an "alliance" with a guy he grew up with- FBI agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) to take down the Italian Mob.
Johnny Depp gives a performance that is at least worthy of an Academy Award nomination. He completely transformed himself for the role. For two hours he stares at you with these haunting eyes and you totally forget that he's Johnny Depp. It's so scary and tense whenever he's on screen. One minute he's very calm and the next he's putting a bullet is someone's head. All it takes is one little word or action and you'll quickly realize you don't fuck with this guy. It had me cringing in my seat the whole time.
I thought Joel Edgerton did just as good a job. This is as much his movie as it is Depp's. He's having and incredible year and I couldn't be happier for him.
There are so many great actors in here that I just don't have time to talk about all of them. I will say that I don't think anyone in here gave a bad performance.
This could've easily been a three hour movie. I honestly think they should have made it that long. There's no way you can fit the whole story of Whitey Bulger into two hours, although director Scott Cooper does his best attempt. There are certain points in the movie where it feels like something is missing. Not that it's edited poorly. You can just tell there had been an explanation but maybe pressure from the studio forced him to cut the run time down. I really hope they release an extended cut on DVD/Blu-Ray.
If you're interested in knowing more about this, I highly recommend a documentary called Whitey: United States of America vs. James J. Bulger. It's goes into a lot more details especially once Whitey is caught and his trial begins. I had the chance to see this last year and it's very well made and fascinating to watch. It's on Netflix right now.
If you're a fan of gangster movies or any of the actors in here, I think you'll love Black Mass. It's well worth the money to see it in theaters.
My Rating: 9.5/10