The Untouchables (1987)

The Untouchables (1987) - poster

Raiting: 7,8 /10

Genre: Crime

Director: Brian De Palma

Stars: Kevin Costner, Robert De Niro and Sean Connery

Country: United States

Release date: 3 June 1987

Length: 119 minutes

"The Untouchables" (1987), directed by Brian De Palma, is a gripping crime drama set during the Prohibition era in the United States, focusing on the battle between Eliot Ness, a determined federal agent, and Al Capone, the notorious gangster who ruled Chicago with an iron fist. The film opens with Ness, played by Kevin Costner, forming a special team to take down Capone, portrayed by Robert De Niro, whose criminal activities are funded by the illegal alcohol trade.

Ness assembles a small, but dedicated team known as "The Untouchables", comprising of a seasoned beat cop, Jim Malone (Sean Connery); a sharpshooting rookie from the police academy, George Stone (Andy Garcia); and an accountant from the Treasury Department, Oscar Wallace (Charles Martin Smith). This diverse group unites with the common goal of bringing Capone to justice, using any means necessary. Their mission is fraught with danger and moral ambiguity as they face corruption within the police force and the legal system, which are under Capone's influence.

The film chronicles the team's strategic and sometimes violent encounters with Capone's associates, leading to significant victories but also tragic losses. One of the most memorable moments is the ambush on the Canadian border, a meticulously planned operation to intercept a large shipment of liquor. This scene, along with others, showcases De Palma's skillful direction, blending intense action with dramatic storytelling.

Amidst their crusade, the team suffers a devastating blow when Capone's men, in retaliation, kill one of their own. The loss strengthens their resolve, leading to a pivotal turn in their investigation. They discover that Capone has not filed tax returns, which provides them with a legal avenue to prosecute him. The climax of the film is a tense courtroom scene where Ness and his team finally see Capone convicted not of murder or bootlegging, but of tax evasion.

"The Untouchables" is celebrated for its stylish direction, compelling performances, and a memorable score by Ennio Morricone. Sean Connery's portrayal of Malone earned him an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. The film not only tells the story of the fight against organized crime but also explores themes of justice, loyalty, and the moral complexities of law enforcement. It stands as a classic in the crime genre, capturing a volatile period in American history with drama, suspense, and a touch of historical liberty.

Top cast - The Untouchables (1987)

Kevin Costner

Kevin Costner

Eliot Ness

Sean Connery

Sean Connery

Jim Malone

Charles Martin Smith

Charles Martin Smith

Oscar Wallace

Andy Garcia

Andy Garcia

George Stone

Robert De Niro

Robert De Niro

Al Capone

Trailer - The Untouchables (1987)

"The Untouchables" (1987), directed by Brian De Palma, is a cinematic masterpiece that delves into the gritty and tumultuous era of Prohibition in Chicago, focusing on the relentless pursuit of the notorious gangster Al Capone by federal agent Eliot Ness. The film is a thrilling blend of historical drama and action, brought to life by a stellar cast and De Palma's distinctive directorial flair. With Kevin Costner as Eliot Ness and Robert De Niro as Al Capone, the movie boasts performances that are both powerful and nuanced.

The narrative is compelling and well-structured, weaving together moments of intense action with deeper explorations of the characters' moral and ethical dilemmas. Sean Connery's portrayal of Jim Malone is particularly noteworthy, earning him an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. His character serves as the moral compass for Ness, guiding him through the murky waters of law enforcement during a time when the lines between right and wrong were often blurred. The dynamic between Ness and Malone is one of the film's highlights, showcasing the theme of mentorship and the passing of wisdom between generations.

Brian De Palma's direction is impeccable, utilizing his signature style to enhance the storytelling. The film features several memorable sequences, including the iconic staircase shootout, a masterful homage to the "Odessa Steps" sequence from "Battleship Potemkin." De Palma's use of slow motion and dramatic angles heightens the tension and visual impact of these scenes, making them unforgettable. The cinematography by Stephen H. Burum complements the direction beautifully, capturing the essence of 1920s Chicago with its stark contrasts and shadowy undertones.

The score by Ennio Morricone is another standout aspect of the film. Morricone's compositions add layers of emotional depth and tension, elevating the narrative and enriching the overall viewing experience. The music is both haunting and evocative, perfectly matching the film's atmosphere and themes.

While "The Untouchables" takes certain liberties with historical accuracy, it succeeds as a piece of entertainment that also offers commentary on justice, corruption, and the American Dream. It's a film that balances action with character development, making the audience care deeply about the fate of its protagonists. The moral complexities and ethical questions it raises are as relevant today as they were in the era it depicts. "The Untouchables" remains a high point in the careers of everyone involved and a standout entry in the crime genre, offering a gripping, stylish, and emotionally resonant experience that stands the test of time.