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He's a consummate politician who walks a mile in your shoes, feels your pain. But there may be more to populist New York City populist mayor Al Pacino than meets the eye. Year: 1996 Director: Harold Becker Starring: Al Pacino, John Cusack, Bridget Fonda, Danny Aiello Special Features: Interactive menus, Scene access Video Format: A: Standard; B: Widescreen Sound: English: Dolby Surround 2.0; French; Subtitles: English, French Region Coding: 1 (U.S. and Canada)
- Aspect Ratio : 1.85:1
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : No
- MPAA rating : s_medR R (Restricted)
- Product Dimensions : 7.5 x 5.38 x 0.6 inches; 4 Ounces
- Director : Harold Becker
- Media Format : Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, DTS Surround Sound, Widescreen, NTSC
- Run time : 1 hour and 51 minutes
- Release date : July 27, 1999
- Actors : Al Pacino, John Cusack, Bridget Fonda, Danny Aiello, Martin Landau
- Dubbed: : French
- Subtitles: : English, French
- Producers : Charles Mulvehill, Edward R. Pressman, Elizabeth Carroll
- Language : English (Dolby Digital 2.0)
- Studio : Turner Home Ent
- ASIN : B00000JGHL
- Writers : Bo Goldman, Ken Lipper, Nicholas Pileggi, Paul Schrader
- Number of discs : 1
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Director Harold Becker brings to life this engaging story set in a rainy / gritty New York City that is populated bya mélange of characters you would love to hang out with. Somewhat of the the "LA Confidential" ilk, City Hall has a big, strong cast. A compelling narrative with lots of twists and turns, but not so obtuse that you have to hang on every word. A story about good and evil where yes, you want the good guys to win - but the bad guys are so much fun you'd love to find yourself in acorner booth with a few of them one night, sipping a beer and listening to their many entertaining colorful stories.
I like this role for Pacino. There's lots of room here for him to do his thing, but he does not go over the top a la Scarface. If you are a Pacino fan (and who's not?) you know that he often has a set piece in his films. A scene where he takes center-stage to make a "speech" that might not turn out too well. (You're out of order!) But as he gathers his thoughts, and finds his voice, and pulls the crowd along with him - he pulls the skeptics into his corner and propels the story to the next level. No exception here. He does it here with almost religious fervor which you will enjoy in the exposition of the film.
Pacino is supported by a great cast. Danny Aiello. Martin Landau. Tony Franciosi. Bridget Fonda in one of her better roles and John Cusack, not always one of my favorite actors, who turns in a great performance and plays a pivotal role the ties the story together, as you will see. Big sweeping score by Jerry Goldsmith with some melodic themes that will stick in your head, in a most delightful way.
Harold Becker he seems to have had a couple big films during the late 80s and early 90s including Sea of Love - but then appears to have fallen off the map. One credit that jumped out at me was The Onion Field (1979) which was not a huge movie, but WAS written by Joseph Wambaugh, who I consider to be the Godfather of the Modern Police genre. If you are not familiar with this work... look him up.
City Hall is a delightful popcorn movie that will take you for a tour through the neighborhoods of New York City and these machinations of the Political Machine back in the day. Back to when integrity still mattered, sometimes. That's what City Hall is all about, as you will be delighted to discover.
There were times when this picture mentioned so many characters, probably too many. It may take a second viewing to remember, "which Zapatti was which?" After so many cross-references, one has to stop and think just to recap.
The ending didn't have a lot of sting. It was built up for so long in a good way and then was a little bit of a letdown. This was one of the few letdowns in the film
I think that since the movie wasn't billed as a huge, blockbuster big screen hit, it made some forget that this movie even existed. Pacino was great but the film's lack of "splash" in the theaters may have accounted for no nominations. It was semi-successful in the home market, and viewers are still learing that this title is out there. Made in 1996, it still stands up seven years later and should still be popular for many years from now.
So, make yourself some lemon pudding (you'll see) and rent this movie! Overall, a great picture.
4 ½ out of 5!!!