Review: The Irishman (2019)

Director: Martin Scorsese
Screenwriter: Steven Zaillian
Starring: Robert DeNiro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, Bobby Cannavale, Anna Paquin
Genres: Drama, Mystery, History
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language and strong violence
Release Dates: 11/1/19 (Limited Theatrical); 11/27/19 (Disc/Streaming-Netflix)
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96%

2019 was the year of legendary directors at the top of their game, and The Irishman is evidence that Martin Scorsese is as good as he has ever been. People complaining about the film’s length (3.5 hours) clearly don’t appreciate the art of cinema, and with it being available on Netflix, it is very easy to take [short] breaks where needed, as I did without feeling overwhelmed by the film’s epic length.

The story itself is fascinating, but brought to life by Scorsese and the terrific trio of Robert DeNiro, Joe Pesci (who returned from semi-retirement), and Al Pacino, it is magnificent and masterful. The de-aging of the main actors is a bit jarring at first, but is so well done that it is believable and hardly distracting. If you don’t watch the whole film, then the build-up to the climactic third act will make no sense.

How fortunate are we all to get to see DeNiro, Pacino, Pesci, and Scorsese at the top of their respective games?  It’s a shame that the film received so many Oscar nominations, but no wins. 


Vegan Notes
– At one point, DeNiro’s character (as a young man), walks through a butchery; before he joined forces with Jimmy Hoffa and the mob, he delivered meat.
– The characters eat non-vegan food (including steak) throughout the film.