Scarface Critical Essay

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De Palma takes ten minutes shy of three hours to tell a story that took the 1932 version 90 minutes to cover. Brian De Palma was also fortunate to have talented John A. Alonzo's talents were very useful in those scenes in which expensive and flashy clothes, cars, houses and beautiful women strike powerful contrast with the ultimately dark subject and plot of the film.

Oliver Stone's presence as Screen writer is evident in his sense of political indignation, and in the way he portrays the American dream, which, according to this film, is more about greed, lies and corruption than hard work.

Any list of classic movies for men would be incomplete without an appearance from Brian De Palma's "Scarface." The film gives life to one of the most ruthless characters in movie history, Cuban refugee, Tony Montana.

Scarface is an powerful story about greed, loyalty, triumph, tragedy, and guns. Scarface, an remake of the 1932 classic, is stylish and may be the most vicious film about the American underworld like Coppola's "Godfather." But, in almost every ways the two films are totally different.

As the postwar period of the 1920s and the early 1930s emerged, there were a group of crime films that dared to be darker, bolder, and more accurate in depicting its characters and their environment in the Great Depression era.

These films focused on the archetypal “rags to riches” story that showcased men who would finally take matters into their own hands, and venture into criminality in order to move up the social ladder.Even after they are married and extremely wealthy, Elvira is critical of Tony's obsession with money and their decadent home.Apparently money has not bought Tony any taste and Elvira tells him, "Nothing exceeds like excess." Tony Montana therefore comes to see that financial success, whether earned by the drug lord or the banker, has boiled down to the mere consumption of food, liquor, sex, and drugs.Usually, these men were often portrayed as heartless individuals, who became successful thanks to their willingness to become murderers and thieves.Although these characters were in many ways callous criminals, they were also appealing and relatable because of their experiences in urban America.In the book, Public Enemies, Public Heroes, author Jonathan Munby states: “Central to the appeal of these gangster films of the early 1930s were their candid dramatization of the contradictory nature of the ethnic urban working-class American experience” (20).There were three gangster films of the early 1930s that had a tremendous cultural impact in depicting the underworld and the working-class American experience; however, one film has stood out the most.Truly great films endure because they appeal to past, present and future generations, and this one is no different.So, Scarface is an important vehicle for understanding the ever-changing conceptions of "America," the American dream, illegal drugs, and the criminal.This Al Pacino masterpiece still continues to thrive because of its exceptional performances, gripping storyline and compelling script.Scarface is an undeniably effective, visceral masterpiece.


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