The Films of Warren Beatty
Dick Tracy (April 25/10)
Based on the long-running comic strip, Dick Tracy follows the title character (Warren Beatty) as he attempts to take down a vicious mobster known as Big Boy Caprice (Al Pacino) - with his ongoing efforts inevitably complicated by an army's worth of sinister goons and henchmen (including William Forsythe's Flattop, Paul Sorvino's Lips Manlis, and James Caan's Spaldoni). Director Beatty - working from a script by Jim Cash and Jack Epps Jr. - has infused Dick Tracy with an almost insanely stylized visual sensibility that's reflected in virtually every aspect of the production, which certainly proves instrumental in perpetuating the film's unabashedly over-the-top, comic-book vibe. Beatty's expectedly charismatic turn as the famed detective effectively anchors the movie and ensures that the relentlessly broad atmosphere never becomes overwhelming, while Pacino's gloriously larger-than-life performance ultimately stands as the most consistently entertaining element within the proceedings. The narrative, which boasts a distinctly serialized feel, unfortunately suffers from a number of lulls that become increasingly conspicuous once the novelty of Beatty's (literally and figuratively) colorful modus operandi starts to fade, with the action-packed (and aggressively relentless) third act subsequently wearing the viewer down and ensuring that the film concludes on a decidedly anti-climactic note. Still, Dick Tracy is, by and large, an impressively conceived piece of work that has just as much to offer adults as it does children (although it's fairly clear that younger viewers will more easily be able to overlook the movie's flaws).