Mean Street


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You do it in the streets. You do it at home. All the rest is BS and you know it. We see Charlie Harvey Keitel starting up in bed, awakened by a dream, and peering at his face in a bedroom mirror. The real world is shot in ordinary colors, but then Charlie descends into the bar run by his friend Tony, and it is always bathed in red, the color of sex, blood and guilt.

He enters the bar in a series of shots at varying levels of slow-motion a Scorsese trademark.

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Mean Streets

He fantasizes about the stripper Jeannie Bell , and later in the movie even makes a date with her but fears being seen by his friends with a black woman, and stands her up. For him both women--any woman he feels lust for--represent a possible occasion of sin, which invests them with such mystery and power that sex pales by comparison. Immediately after dancing with the stripper, he goes to the bar, lights a match and holds his finger above it--instant penance.

He wants redemption. Scorsese, whose screenplay has autobiographical origins, knows why Charlie feels this way: He knows in his bones that the church is right, and he is wrong and weak. Impurity is the real sin; the other stuff is business. Please click the link below to receive your verification email.

Cancel Resend Email. Mean Streets Add Article. Mean Streets Critics Consensus Mean Streets is a powerful tale of urban sin and guilt that marks Scorsese's arrival as an important cinematic voice and features electrifying performances from Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro. Super Reviewer. Share on Facebook. View All Photos.

Mean Streets () - Rotten Tomatoes

Movie Info "You don't make up for your sins in church; you do it in the streets; you do it at home. The rest is bulls--t, and you know it. Driven equally by his wish to become a respectable gangster like his uncle Cesare Danova and his desire to live his life like St. Despite his promises to his epileptic girlfriend Teresa Amy Robinson that they will move out of Little Italy once he strengthens his position in his uncle's world, Charlie's involvement with Johnny Boy further ensnares him in the neighborhood. When Johnny Boy decides to mouth off to Michael rather than pay him, Charlie, Johnny Boy, and Teresa try to flee Michael's murderous anger and an assassin played by Scorsese , forcing Charlie to realize that the rules of the streets do not mesh with absolution.

Whereas fellow "film school generation" director Francis Ford Coppola transformed the Hollywood gangster movie into metaphorical epics about the Mafia and capitalism in The Godfather and The Godfather Part II , Scorsese revised the genre in the opposite direction, focusing on the gritty minutiae of daily life and drawing from personal memory.

Combining documentary-style realism even though most of the film was shot in L. They lead a claustrophobic, petty existence that Scorsese and screenwriter Mardik Martin witnessed growing up in Little Italy, complete with a soundtrack of hit songs like "Be My Baby" and "Jumping Jack Flash" that had poured out of neighborhood radios. Mean Streets opened at the New York Film Festival to excellent notices and played strongly in New York but failed to duplicate that level of business elsewhere. Even so, Mean Streets established Scorsese and De Niro as formidable young talents and marked the beginning of a long-running and fertile collaboration that continued in such films as Taxi Driver , Raging Bull , The King of Comedy , and Goodfellas Scorsese's exceptional grasp of the texture of day-to-day life, the rhythm and cadences of street talk, and cinema's visual and aural possibilities makes Mean Streets one of the pivotal films of the s, as well as of Scorsese's career, and an influence on such future filmmakers as Spike Lee and Quentin Tarantino, among many others.

Classics , Drama. Martin Scorsese. Martin Scorsese , Mardik Martin. Aug 17, Jeanne Bell.

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Robert De Niro as Johnny Boy. Harvey Keitel as Charlie. Amy Robinson as Teresa. David Proval as Tony. Richard Romanus as Michael. Cesare Danova as Giovanni. George Memmoli as Joey.

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Julie Andelman as Girl at Party. Lenny Scaletta as Jimmy. Jeannie Bell as Diane. Victor Argo as Mario. Murray Moston as Oscar. David Carradine as Drunk. Robert Carradine as Assassin. Jeanie Bell as Diane. Lois Walden as Jewish girl. Harry Northrup as Vietnam Veteran. Dino Seragusa as Old man. D'Mitch Davis as Black Cop. Peter Fain as George. Juli Andelman as Girl at Party. Robert Wilder as Benton. Ken Sinclair as Sammy.

Catherine Scorsese as Woman on the Landing. Martin Scorsese as Shorty. Jaime Alba as Young Boy 1. Mar 31, Full Review…. Feb 9, Full Review…. Apr 4, Full Review…. May 22, Full Review…. Apr 16, Rating: 4.

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Mar 3, Full Review…. View All Critic Reviews Jul 23, Peter B Super Reviewer. Critic Reviews. No matter how bleak the milieu, no matter how heartbreaking the narrative, some films are so thoroughly, beautifully realized they have a kind of tonic effect that has no relation to the subject matter. Such a film is Mean Streets. Read full review. The New Yorker - Pauline Kael. Chicago Sun-Times - Roger Ebert.


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Los Angeles Times - Kevin Thomas. Mean Streets is a jazzy riff of a movie, zigging and zagging as if to the beat of snapping fingers. Its greatness lies in its leanness, with nary a word, a move, a gesture that's nonessential. The Guardian - Peter Bradshaw.

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Mean Streets is a brilliantly made film--terrifically acted, sharply photographed and crisply edited. Variety - Staff Not Credited. Scorsese is exceptionally good at guiding his largely unknown cast to near-flawless recreations of types. Outstanding in this regard is De Niro. User Score. Write a Review.

User Reviews. Scorsese's equations for raunchy narrow minded brother is an awe inspiring formula that works magically as a family drama rather than your usual street boys feud. Mean Streets Scorsese's equations for raunchy narrow minded brother is an awe inspiring formula that works magically as a Scorsese's equations for raunchy narrow minded brother is an awe inspiring formula that works magically as a family drama rather than your usual street boys feud.

Mean Streets Scorsese's equations for raunchy narrow minded brother is an awe inspiring formula that works magically as a family drama rather than your usual street boys feud. He has created a dysfunctional family drama that is explored in an ironic tone that leans towards intense life changing dram as it ages on screen. In here, the money making business, the mob mentality, cutthroat politics and guns blazing all over the street is mere distraction. And boy what a distraction it is, his well placed and edited antics leaves your eyes popped and jaws dropped.

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