Film Review: Scarface (Al Pacino) (1983) (Netflix)

This is one of the few pre-1990 films on NetFlix, which guarantees it’s brilliance. Tony Montano (Pacino) is a Cuban gangster and assassin. He’s a beneficiary of Fidel Castro’s cynical ploy to empty Cuban jails and send them to the USA as ‘political refugees’. But Montano only has one skill and Miami is a very good place to practice it.

He quickly joins a drug dealing operation and discovers he’s much smarter and more ruthless than the people running it. There’s only one outcome. As a drug baron Montano is fantastically successful with all the trappings of extraordinary wealth. But there is an inner emptiness. His mother rejects him and he corrupts his sister’s innocent charm.

The film ends with him buried in a desk full of cocaine as a helpless junkie. His enemies surround him and there is a scene of Armageddon style brutality.

Pacino’s career was turbo-charged by The Godfather but this film was a very demanding role for him. If you have to chose watch The Godfather 2 but even better watch them both.

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