Unquestionably, Tom Hardy is the quintessential method actor in contemporary film, rivaling, at times resembling, Marlon Brando; from his 2001 debut in “Black Hawk Down”, “The Dark Night Rises”, “Mad Max”, “The Revenant” (Academy Award Nominee), “Dunkirk”, “Legend” and my most preferred “Locke”, a tour de force, rarely and exquisitely witnessed.
In this revolting, scatological, rendition of Al Capone’s (1899-1947) final year spent in a lobotomized state in a decaying, golden, splendiferous Floridian estate, Hardy reaches a new level of personation; repulsively repellent, he spews vituperative, foul, muddled, meanness to all those questing to relieve him of supposed, hidden millions (never recovered); Hardy corners every aspect of a man, with an IQ of 95 who reigned seven years as a Chicago crime boss, insidiously devoured by neurosyphilis, repugnancy, not empathy, is garnished for “Fonzo” and unfortunately, miserably for Hardy. One scene, of particular obscenity, voluminously vulgar, is a diapered, gun-toting Scarface, ravaging his staff, friends and family in a torrent of lethal bullets; meaningless, sickening poetic justice.
Why director Josh Trank and Tom Hardy collaborated on a film so unworthy of viewing (1975’s version with Ben Gazzara and Silvester Stallone, or 1995’s “Dillinger and Capone” starring Martin Sheen and F. Murray Abraham”, are pivotally intriguing) is mystifying. Its harrowing, nightmarish conclusion, leaves viewers squeamishly tainted, contaminated, by its creation.
ONE & ½ STARS!