Killing Them Softly is a 2012 American neo-noir crime film written and directed by Andrew Dominic and starring Brad Pitt, directed by George V. Higgins’ novel Cogan’s Trade (1974).
The film is about three small-time gangsters who rob a mob-guarded illegal gambling operation, prompting the mob to send two hitmen, Jackie (Pitt) and Mickey (James Gandolfini), to deal with the criminals.
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Killing Them Softly Summary: What happens in the Film?
The plot of “Killing Them Softly” on the deadly Catch-22. A friendly man named Markie Trautman (Ray Liotta) operates a high-stakes poker game for the crowd.
One night the game is marred by two outlaw stick-up men, who make a huge pile of the mob’s money. This in itself is questionable, as it looks like an inside job: would the outsider, even knowing about the secret game, be crazy enough to steal from the crowd?
Talk about crazy. After some time, Marquee, feeling in a good mood, tells the players that he arranged the work himself, plundering their game. He finds this revelation so funny that tears run down his cheeks.
Killing Them Softly Ending Explained: Did they get success?
Gandolfini and Pitt are the financial regulators of the time, Paulson, Geitner, Barr, Bernanke – all of whom are on the bank payroll but are there to keep orders – hence the misguided mortality of the Brad Pitt character, and the washed-out fray of the Gandolfini character.
In They know they have moral obligations, but they also know that it is the banks, not the government, that ultimately pays them.
They eventually “bailout” Jenkins’ driver character (the bank CEO) by solving his own crisis of confidence problem for the driver, in which case killing some of the responsible parties.
Jackie learns that he has been short-changed by the driver, who smiles at a real-life planning CEO, and cites “recession prices”. According to the owners, Jackie will be paid the same as his other hitman, Dylan.
Much to the driver’s surprise, however, Jackie converts to market prices by killing Dylan that morning. Driver attempts to justify his personal view by citing “a business of relationships” and even suggests that Jackie should heed Obama’s statement that “out of many We are one.”
But this American activist, Jackie, doesn’t buy the myth, and links it to her sexual relationship with Founding Father Thomas Jefferson and a slave.
“Don’t make me laugh,” says Jackie, “I’m living in America, and in America, you’re on your own. America isn’t a country. It’s just a business. Now, pay me the f**king.”
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What do we think about The Film ‘Killing Them Softly’?
It’s a shame that the film is so elegantly articulated, as the murder of Jesse James has been widely shared with similar content with such great success.
But absent poppy dialogue and a few terrifyingly well-staged action scenes, the director doesn’t quite live up to the material. Seems, and most of what he is good at getting strong performances from an amazing group of character actors,
With only Pitt, unfortunately, giving a typical B-level performance that we know he’s capable of. The main attraction, I’d wager, is the incompetent thief played by McNairy and Mendelsohn the latter of whom appears to be composed almost entirely of greasy sweat,
The most fallible and thus the most human element in the world that largely is cold and brutal – McNairy in particular is an actor I forget I really like,
And he’s actually quite exceptional as the nervous, easily terrified pose, whose shrill, hoarse voice only reflects his total inability to live out the world he himself placed in.