Your browser does not support or blocks cookies. The site will not function properly. Do not ask for support.

Stream it now

American Gangster 2007

In 1970s America, a detective works to bring down the drug empire of Frank Lucas, a heroin kingpin from Manhattan, who is smuggling the drug into the country from the Far East...

Release Date:
November 2, 2007
157 min
Ridley Scott
Enrique Sebastian Rivas, Louis Rosario, Luis Salgado, ...
Drama, Crime, Biography ...

Your rating:0

Solar rating:8.8


Imdb rating:7.8

Show More...


This movie is an amazing movie. I loved it! Watch it over and over again! 9/10!
Denzel is my man!!!! Every one of Denzels movies are solid. His portfolio is too solid.
One of my all time favorite movies. 10/10★ Denzel Is a work of art.
Why is it that I've never watched this until now?! I couldn't tell you because I hardly ever miss a Denzel movie! He was absolutely wonderful in this, as he is in everything else he's in.. LOVE him. 9/10

Classic from Denzel Washington. And one of my favorites 10/10

No Country for Old Men -- 9

Wristcutters: A Love Story -- 6

Seraphim Falls -- 8

American Gangster -- 7.5

1/1 -- 13 Tzameti (Babluani, 2005, DVD rental): 9
Borderline 10.
An 8/10 doesn't usually mean a dissapointment from me. In this case it does. It offers nothing really new to the genre. Its really made, good entertainment. No way this gets nominated for best picture.
American Gangster, grade: A

Long title, long film. Great title, very good film. So rejoice, rejoice oh yee die hard Malick fans (you know who you are). This retelling of a classic and often told American legend is one of the most noteworthy pictures of the year. Casey Affleck all but lunges for the supporting actor awards in a startling performance of tragic, eerie obsessiveness. I for one didn't know he was this good. The Assassination of Jesse James is compulsively watchable with its enlongated lyrical prose that I'm willing to guess that oh, no one who loved 3:10 to Yuma will love this. For me the film (flawed by length and a slightly pretentious structure in its middle section) is a winner for performances, direction, cinematography, and for the ideas put forward by the smart screenplay. As much as we love our heroes, we really hate our villians. Just ask Robert Ford.
Fantastic. I love it. Dont take kids to see this!
uneventful and mediocre although well performed
In the early 1970s, Frank Lucas rose to prominence as a major player in the Harlem drug trade. Eventually arrested and sentenced to 70 years in prison, Lucas cooperated with state and federal prosecutors in exchange for a reduced sentence (he served 15 years). After coming across a profile of Lucas written by Marc Jacobson Lucas seven years ago in New York magazine, screenwriter Steven Zaillian (Gangs of New York, Clear and Present Danger, Schindler's List, Searching for Bobby Fischer, The Falcon and the Snowman) optioned Jacobson's article and developed a screenplay. Two false starts later, Ridley Scott (Kingdom of Heaven, Black Hawk Down, Gladiator, Blade Runner, Alien) stepped in to direct Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe. The end result is an often compelling, visually impressive, if unnecessarily long, crime drama, American Gangster.

Frank Lucas (Denzel Washington), a driver, collector, and enforcer, works for a Harlem gangster, Ellsworth "Bumpy" Johnson (Clarence Williams III). After Johnson's unexpected death leaves a power vacuum, Lucas decides become his own (gang) boss. Lucas develops a brilliant plan to take over the dope trade in Harlem, going straight to the source in Southeast Asia and cutting out the stateside middlemen. Calling his brand of heroin Blue Magic, Lucas sells it at half the price and twice the purity of the competition. He convinces his brothers to leave South Carolina and come up North to work for him, becomes wealthy, marries a Puerto Rican beauty queen, Eva (Lymari Nadal), and sets up his mother, (Ruby Dee), in a lavish, plantation-style mansion. With the exception of a corrupt cop, Detective Trupo (Josh Brolin), who keeps coming around for handouts and threatening retribution for non-compliance, the future seems limitless for Lucas.

Richie Roberts (Russell Crowe), seemingly the last honest cop in New Jersey, comes across a large stash of cash belonging to a local numbers game. Driven by a code of honor, Roberts turns over the cash to his superior officers, but doing that makes him a pariah with the other police officers. As the drug trade in Harlem, New York, and New Jersey expands exponentially, the feds decide to create a narcotics task force. Roberts' captain, Lou Toback (Ted Levine), taps Roberts to head up the task force. Roberts has to find other detectives who won't be easily corrupted. As Roberts begins and continues his investigation, he slowly realizes that a new player, probably not Italian, has taken over Harlem. Finding his quarry's identity proves difficult, especially as his superiors in New Jersey and the federal prosecutor's office refuse to believe that an African American can run such a sophisticated operation.

Structurally, American Gangster breaks down into two parallel stories, each meant to reflect on the other. In one, the template is Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather, tracking Lucas' rise to power and his efforts to maintain power in the face of opposition from other gangsters, corrupt cops, and federal and state prosecution. In the other, William Friedkin's The French Connection serves as the model, as an obsessive cop methodically pieces together a case against Lucas and his organization over several years. The two stories don't overlap as much as run parallel, converging only in the last half hour. It's almost immediately after the storylines converge that American Gangster loses the energy and momentum that characterized the first two hours (American Gangster runs close to two and a half hours) and gives way to a muddled, overlong epilogue.

The overextended epilogue, however, is only a minor problem with a film that delivers on just about everything else it promises, e.g., a solidly crafted screenplay by Steve Zaillian that, for the most part, will convince moviegoers to cut American Gangster slack for relying on genre conventions, riveting performances by Washington and Crowe, dynamic direction by Ridley Scott, whose attention for period detail is as meticulous as ever, as is his eye for visual composition and fluid camera movements, and taut editing that only goes slack in the last half hour. American Gangster may not belong to the pantheon of gangster/crime dramas, but it comes close.

The bustling streets of seventies' Harlem are shot with a tender justice by Scott, who saturates everything of colour in order to show a City draining of goodness before our very eyes. We have been lucky this year to experience two wonderful reinvigorations of well-trodden genres, with David Fincher's 'Zodiac' joining 'American Gangster' as one of the finest modern portrayals of its respective type. Indeed many comparisons and differences can be drawn between the two. One of the negative aspects of 'Zodiac' was its bloated runtime, and at a lengthy 157 minutes 'American Gangster' could be expected to drag also. But this potential pitfall is skillfully avoided by the director - who's use of a striding score and decidedly restless cinematography ensures that while the film may slow down in places, it never stops outright. The only thing that perhaps proves to be a drawback here is the fact Scott isn't attempting anything drastically new with regard to plot - and although the interesting moral interchange betwen his two leads is unique enough, the sometimes clumsy dialogue lets the film down in places. An element that can be forgiven however when considering how much focus is placed on action and reaction, body language, expression and emotion.

7/10 :fresh:
I loved it. Review will come later
Denzel Washington and Russel Crowe deliver Oscar worthy performances in American Gangster. The characters they play are vastly different from one another. Frank Lucas (Washington) has chosen a life of crime but believes in holding a strong relationship with his family. Richie Roberts (Crowe), on the other hand, is an honest cop who cheats on his wife and a not so great father.

AG is a combination of mob and police procedural movies like Scarface, Godfather, Zodiac and The Departed. It didn't rise above or fall below my expectations. The runtime could have been 20-25 minutes less with the removal of some of the court proceedings and drug trafficking in Asia.
Great performances from Crowe and Washington.
American Gangster is a polished mix of familiar stories, all smudged together and drowned in culture. The two main plotlines are very well developed, and draw the viewer deep into the lives of Frank Lucas (Denzel Washington) and Richie Roberts (Russell Crowe), who both give equally great performances. It is exciting to watch these strong leads slowly intertwine and head towards a suspenseful and well executed ending. Regrettably, American Gangster is uninventive both narratively and visually, and falls short of being commanding, instead only managing to pull off engaging and refined.
:fresh: One of the best films I've seen in a long time, and by far the best of the year. Denzel agreed to take on the character of Frank Lucas but did not want to glorify a man who was true pariah in society. He did a great job. Denzel and Crowe are going to be competing for a lot of awards just as this film will. Underlying a great story line fraught with action, drama, and suspense, there is a good message I hope everyone takes away from the movie.

This film is based on a true story. Even though Frank Lucas and his posse were eventually taken off the streets, there were others that immediately replaced him. A family cartel was busted in Queens this summer which turned out to be one that spanned the globe. Their source of heroin was Afghanistan on farms owned by the Taliban. They see the drug as a weapon against the west from which the proceeds are used to continue their war of terror. Frank Lucas did just the same by purchasing heroin from a source that used the money against US forces in Vietnam during the war. He used his business savvy to do evil by helping fund the enemy abroad while destroying families and lives here in America. While he is much more than just an "American Gangster", the film effectively delivers a message of right and wrong through Lucas' rise and fall.
ichie Roberts (Oscar winner Crowe) is an outcast cop close enough to the streets to feel a shift of control in the drug underworld. Roberts believes someone is climbing the rungs above the known Mafia families and starts to suspect that a black power player has come from nowhere to dominate the scene. Both Lucas and Roberts share a rigorous ethical code that sets them apart from their own colleagues, making them lone figures on opposite sides of the law. The destinies of these two men will become intertwined as they approach a confrontation where only one of them can come out on top. Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe, Brian Grazer and Ridley Scott team to tell the true juggernaut success story of a cult figure from the streets of 1970s Harlem in American Gangster. Nobody used to notice Frank Lucas (Oscar winner Washington), the quiet driver to one of the inner city's leading black crime bosses. But when his boss suddenly dies, Frank exploits the opening in the power structure to build his own empire and create his own version of the American Dream. Through ingenuity and a strict business ethic, he comes to rule the inner-city drug trade, flooding the streets with a purer product at a better price. Lucas outplays all of the leading crime syndicates and becomes not only one of the city's mainline corrupters, but part of its circle of legit civic superstars. This is one of the best films of the decade. Ridley Scott does a superb job capturing the time that this film is set in. The performances are first rate. Denzel Washington, and Russell Crowe have never been better. Though the film is a bit long, and the beginning isther slow, the film never fails to engage. This film is very likely to see some very nice awards come January, and December. It's a rock solid crime drama in the form of "Scarface," and "The Godfather." It is to your benefit to see this film.

yay or nay? huge yay. an incredible achievement.

oscar bait? It's this year's "The Departed." So there's your answer.

Report a problem