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  • American Gangster [Blu-ray] [2007] [US Import]
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American Gangster [Blu-ray] [2007] [US Import]

159 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (159 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0026BTRPU
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 532,086 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Laurence Williams TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 1 Jan. 2012
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
This violent drama, from director Ridley Scott, is a modern production covering vintage subject-matter, namely the rise (and fall) of the New York real-life enforcer turned 'drug-lord' Frank Lucas from the late 60s to early 90s. To balance things up (and justify the near 3-hour running time of the extended edition) the biopic also follows, in almost equal measure, the progress of loner police narcotics detective Richie Roberts as juggles his attempts to bring to book those involved in New York organised crime with part-time educational activities in order to become a fully-qualified lawyer.

Whilst there are significant detail differences in the 'story', overall it is not unlike the earlier classic film 'The French Connection' in the sense that we have a policeman who becomes almost infatuated with tracking-down a single 'personality' in involved in local illegal drug dealings. It is certainly not like other 'gangster' movie classics such as 'Goodfellas' or 'The Godfather', despite many reviews mentioning them in the same breath as this film, if for no other reason than those other classics focussed entirely on the criminals and their personal lives.

The biggest similarity between this film and the FC is that the respective gangsters are both ruthless yet almost classy in their demeanour and the policemen are both rather shambling yet strangely effective; the one difference being that Richards is (almost) completely 'legitimate' and honest, as well us getting to know a lot about his personal life (eg failed marriage, law education), whereas 'Popeye' in the FC often transgresses and all we ever see of him is while he is 'on the job'.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By FiTP on 25 July 2011
Format: DVD
American Gangster is one of those films that I was put off buying, on the assumption it would be a 'blood and guts', 'shoot 'em up' type of film, and indeed my heart sank when I watched the opening scene. I needn't have worried though, AG is far above most other recent films of this genre, with a depth to it (allowed for no doubt by being based on a true story) that tends to be missing from many such films nowadays, where special effects are seen as a substitute for a decent plot.

As other reviwers have noted, it's a long film, but one that keeps the viewer hooked right to the end. From being a film purchased for no other reason than it was cheap AG has gone straight into my 'keeper' section and I can't really offer a higher recommendation than that!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Spike Owen TOP 500 REVIEWER on 27 July 2012
Format: DVD
This is the true story of 1970s Harlem drug lord Frank Lucas who submarined the Mafia gangs by importing his heroin uncut direct from Thailand, and thus able to corner the drug market with cheaper prices. On his trail is Richie Roberts, one of the few honest cops operating out of his corrupt department.

American Gangster may turn out to be one of the most divisive films in Ridley Scott's cannon, gone are the visual traits that are beloved by so many of his fans, and in comes straight forward story telling, heavy on plot and filmed as a near to a documentary style as Scott has ventured thus far in a mainstream picture. I have no doubt that cries of Scott merely dipping his toes in crime picture waters from the past will be used against him, and for sure there is nothing remotely new in the Steve Zaillian screenplay here to make anyone sit up and take notice. But I applaud Scott for making, what on the page looked to have been a run of the mill crime caper, into a riveting character study. Full of 70s fashions and police procedural gusto, American Gangster lifts itself above the average crime capers of yesteryear because it boasts two of the best actors working today in the lead roles.

Russell Crowe plays Richie Roberts with much restraint, and it's thru this restraint that the character becomes more believable, Roberts has his issues for sure (notably of the romantic kind), but his unflinching deep rooted belief in honesty gives the character an earthy aura, and it's down to Crowe that the character succeeds on the screen. Taking the honours here, though, is Denzel Washington as Frank Lucas, full of zest and charming menace, he infuses Lucas with credibility as both a caring family man and also a merciless crime lord. Great performances, both.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By O E J TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 6 May 2008
Format: DVD
There's nothing new about a film covering the lives of organised crime kingpins in New York, but this one does have an original take on the theme in that 'the don' in this case is not Italian American, but African American. Denzel Washington is excellent in the lead role as highly self-disciplined heroin dealer Frank Lucas whose late mentor taught him the benefits of cutting out the middle-man and doing all the buying, flying and distribution himself. It's only when he compromises on these disciplines and delegates key responsibilities to others less smart than he is that things start to fall apart. The story - based mainly on actual events - is told using the Vietnam war between 1968 and 1973 as a timeline, appropriate because Lucas literally depended on the continuation of the conflict to maintain his supply and transport. As soon as that threatened to come to an end, his unique 'brand' of Blue Magic heroin was in grave danger of ending alongside it, but before Lucas has time to worry about what to do next, the four-year mission of clean-as-a-whistle undercover narcotics agent Richie Roberts (Russell Crowe) reaches a climax as he at last finds out how the dope is brought into the country and who is behind it.Read more ›
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