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Carlito's Way

Carlito's Way Poster
Carlito's Way Poster

Released

1993

Runtime

145

Carlito's Way

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What's it About

When Puerto Rican gangster Carlito Brigante (Pacino) is released early from a long prison sentence thanks to the efforts of his wily, cocaine-snorting lawyer, Dave Kleinfeld (Penn), he decides to turn over a new leaf. But Brigante's old enemies and street associates, like Pachanga (Guzman), aren't keen on letting Carlito live a peaceable, law-abiding life. Also, Carlito's indebtedness to the sleazy Kleinfeld may cost him dearly in the long run.

Why we love it

Set in the swinging disco era, De Palma's moody, absorbing study of an ex-con trying to stay on the straight and narrow offers just the right mix of noirish urban atmosphere and cathartic mob drama. Perfecting yet another Hispanic accent, Pacino is excellent as the brooding former hood who takes a job managing a club, hoping eventually to settle in the Caribbean with his stripper girlfriend, Gail (Miller). Little does he know that he'll be suckered into abetting Kleinfeld in an ill-advised hit. Great support from Penn (in an unusual turn), and comedian John Leguizamo as a flashy, menacing thug on the rise, add to the film's high-caliber impact. So, why not do it "Carlito's Way"?

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