Starring: Johnny Depp, Joel Edgerton, Benedict Cumberbatch, Juno Temple, Dakota Johnson, Brad Carter, Kevin Bacon, Corey Stoll, Adam Scott, Peter Sarsgaard, Jesse Plemons, Julianne Nicholson, Rory Cochrane
OUR RATING: ★★★☆☆
Bio-crime drama directed by Scott Cooper. Based on a true story, Black Mass (2015) centers on mobster James “Whitey” Bulger (Johnny Depp) and FBI Agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) who persuades Bulger to collaborate with the FBI to bring down the Italian mob in exchange for protection for Bulger. However, the alliance spirals out of control, leading to murders, drug dealing, racketeering indictments, and, ultimately, the biggest informant scandal in the history of the FBI and Bulger becoming the most ruthless and powerful gangsters in Boston history.
Our Favorite Quote:
John Connolly: I grew up with Jimmy and his brother Billy, the senator, and that is a bond that doesn’t get broken.
FBI Agent: I need to know everything you know about the Winter Hill gang, and specifically, what you know about your former boss and now fugitive, James Whitey Bulger.
Kevin Weeks: Well, let’s start.
Kevin Weeks: In the beginning, Jimmy was a small time player. He was a very smart, disciplined man. And the next thing you know he’s the damn Kingpin. You know why? Because the FBI let it happen.
John Connolly: Your brother, he’s wading in some very dark waters.
Bill Bulger: Jimmy’s business is Jimmy’s business.
John Connolly: We all need friends, even Jimmy. Even you.
Billy Bulger: Hey, Ma, did you hear Old Mother Burke died over on Baker’s Street? No one found here for a couple of weeks.
Mom Bulger: That’s right. And when they broke down the door, the cats had devoured the best part of her.
Billy Bulger: That’s beautiful, Ma.
John Connolly: I’m not asking you to help me. I’m asking you to help your brother.
Billy Bulger: That’s the same thing now, isn’t it?
John Connolly: I can help you, Jimmy, and you can help me. It’s an alliance.
Whitey Bulger: We’ll get the FBI to fight our wars and we do whatever we want to do.
Charles McGuire: Bulger’s playing us, making a fool of the Bureau.
Fred Wyshak: How come no one has nailed Whitey Bulger? He seems to be involved in every crime in the city, and yet the Bureau keeps saying he’s clean!
John Connolly: Well, what’s Bulger done?
Fred Wyshak: What’s he done? Everything!
Whitey Bulger: Take your shot, but make it your best. Cause I get up, I’ll eat you.
Whitey Bulger: [to his son] Hey, buddy. I need you to listen very carefully to what I’m saying, because there are lessons again and again throughout your whole life. And you got to learn from these things, right? It’s not what you do, it’s when and where you do it, and who you do it to or with. If nobody sees it, it didn’t happen.
Lindsey Cyr: Jimmy, he’s six. You really think that’s the best thing to be telling your kid?
Whitey Bulger: Yeah.
Mrs. Cody: Jimmy! When did you get out of Alcatraz?
Whitey Bulger: Ooh, that’s nearly ten years ago.
Mrs. Cody: Well, it’s wonderful to have you back in the neighborhood, son.
Whitey Bulger: What did you marinate this steak in? Because it’s out of this world. You’re killing me with it.
John Morris: Now, now, it’s a family secret.
Whitey Bulger: Oh, come on! You got to tell me that. What’s the secret? Come on, you can do it, come on, that is one of the best goddamn steaks I have ever had in my life, ever. What’s the family secret recipe?
John Morris: It’s ground garlic and a little bit of soy.
Whitey Bulger: That’s it?
John Morris: Yeah, that’s it. That’s it.
Whitey Bulger: I thought it was a family secret.
John Morris: It’s a recipe.
Whitey Bulger: No. No. You said to me this is a family secret, and you gave it up to me, boom, just like that. You spill the secret family recipe today, maybe you spill a little something about me tomorrow, hm?
John Morris: I was just saying that…
Whitey Bulger: You were just saying? “Just saying” gets people sent away. “Just saying” got me a nine-year stretch in Alcatraz, you understand? So, “just saying” can get you buried real quick.
Whitey Bulger: [suddenly laughs and points to Morris] Look at his face!
Whitey Bulger: You always have a choice. You just happened to make the wrong f***ing one.
John Morris: We’re in too deep, and he knows it!
John Connolly: Like it or not, Marriane, you married a street kid. And the streets taught me that you give and you get loyalty from your friends. And loyalty means a lot to me.