What if your own family stood in the way of everything you
worked for? Bobby Green (Joaquin Phoenix) has forsaken his
name to escape his family and their tradition in law enforcement
to pursue his ambitions as a Brooklyn nightclub owner. As
he turns a blind eye to the drug dealers around him, he comes
face to face with the family he abandoned when his brother
(Mark Wahlberg) and father (Robert Duvall) crack down on the
club. Now Bobby must choose a side. Is he going to turn informant
or will he help run the biggest crime ring in New York history?
Director James Gray, Joaquin Phoenix and Mark Wahlberg
reunite here after their stint together in the 2000 production
title hails from the slogan of the New York Police Department
back in the eighties and the story unavoidably deals with
cops and crimes. Phoenix and Wahlberg plays brothers, Bobby
and Joseph respectively with their father Albert Grusinsky
(veteran actor Robert Duvall) being the Chief of Police. Bobby
is the estranged son who adopts his mum’s maiden name
and prefers to run a nightclub rather than follow the footsteps
of his elder brother and father.
when a drug cartel is found operating out of his nightclub
by the Police, Bobby’s carefree life with his girlfriend
Amanda (Eva Mendes) starts to spiral out of control. Instead
of a shoot-em-all cop drama, Gray opts to focus on the brotherly
and fatherly love of the Grusinsky family. The performance
of the cast is plain exhilarating. Wahlberg impresses even
though his screentime was limited, Mendes’s role could
be developed further and Duvall is excellent as a doting father.
No doubt about it, Phoenix is the only one who steals the
show with his Bobby character.
are some who compared this to “The Departed” or
some other gritty crime flicks such as the recent “Street
Kings”. Although dealing on the issue of crime, each
has its own individual merits and “We Own the Night”
stands firmly on his own without penetrating into say Martin
Scorsese or Michael Mann’s territory.
is less flashy and more of a subtle storyteller and you can
see he’s not so keen in the action, pyrotechnics department.
There a few gunshots and a surprisingly low-key car chase
in the rain, other than that he just slowly let his cast carry
the movie along.
you prefer a crime flick with less noises and runs in the
old-fashioned way, I suggest you let Joaquin Phoenix owns
SPECIAL FEATURES :
Tension: Creating We Own The Night is a 15 minutes
feature that covers interviews with the director, producer
and the cast. Gray is quite an engaging talker so you won’t
feel really bored hearing him talk about technical details,
behind the scenes snippets in Commentary with Writer
and Director James Gray. We can to see how the car
chase is choreographed (with digital rain added in post-production)
and how a stunt is executed in Police Action: Filming
Cops, Cars, and Chaos. Gray talks why “Blondie”
music is used in the background and how vintage costumes are
used to fit the eighties era in A Moment In Crime:
Creating Late 80's Brooklyn. A bunch of other Sony
trailers including 30 Days of Night, Walk
Hard etc round up this DVD.
the grimness of the movie, the DVD transfer is excellent.
Night details which comprised most parts of the duration are
justifiable and solid. Dialogue is the main draw of the movie
and the Dolby Digital 5.1 track does a fair job, you can listen
clearly to Mendes’ moaning and Phoenix’s breathing
by Linus Tee