The Hitmen Diaries: Charlie Valentine

2009

Crime / Drama / Thriller

1
IMDb Rating 5.3/10 10 704 704

Top cast

Keith David as Sal
Michael Weatherly as Danny Valentine
Tom Berenger as Becker
Steven Bauer as Ferucci
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
886.85 MB
1280*484
English 2.0
R
23.976 fps
1 hr 36 min
Seeds 11
1.78 GB
1918*724
English 5.1
R
23.976 fps
1 hr 36 min
Seeds 10

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Dagdason 5 / 10

Director tried too hard

First of all I was really looking forward to seeing this movie, I am familiar with all of the players in this film and had heard great things about it. I saw the trailer from the Sacramento International Film Festival and was quite intrigued.

As a fiction writer I have to say the story was great, as a screenplay writer I have to say that it was great and it hit all its plot points right on. As an actor I would have to say that the players were at least a 7 out of 10, but direction defeated some. Where it starts to fall apart is with the editing, sound and direction. The cinematography had it's high points but seemed to be defeated by the direction, sound and FX.

At points it was obvious that the editor and Foley were rushed to get this finalized.

I came in with elated expectations and came away really angry about the final product. I say give it back to a real hard core editor/storyteller and see what comes out of their efforts.

Reviewed by trinity-destler 6 / 10

Probably more good than bad...

...but the bad is pretty distracting.

Though the cinematography is slick and attractive, the editing is extremely flawed. This leaves the film disjointed and choppy; certain scenes become complete non-sequiturs, some of the action gets muddy, and jump cuts occasionally get ahead of themselves. Another round in the editing room could seriously improve the storytelling, because the right elements for an extremely compelling and rewarding character drama are there, they're just poorly communicated. The structure of something great is present, but it isn't filled out.

My second biggest problem was Raymond J. Barry. He was dull and often awkward as the eponymous gangster, there's only the occasional flash of the charisma and appeal his character is supposed to have. He delivers almost all his dialogue in an unsteady, disinterested mumble, and gritty realism may be unintelligible, but realism of that kind certainly puts a damper on the plot and characterisation. The other actors were uniformly excellent, especially Michael Weatherly who shone brilliantly in the last quarter of the film, though none of them have quite as much to do as they should. Danny and Charlie's Parole Officer both needed more development as individuals and a little more background would have helped the father/son relationship a lot.

Give me a reason why Danny admires Charlie so much and I would have been more willing to go along for the ride with them. Their reunion and Charlie's allure and charm as a successful gangster was rushed past and barely present, respectively. Danny's first defining character trait is uneasiness with authority and a fervent desire to remain out of prison. Why does he then turn around and become a disciple of his father without any kind of intermediate process of rationalisation? Yes, he wants to hold on to his father at any cost, but where is the indecision and what about Charlie's behaviour resolves him? As it was, his hero worship and abandonment issues must be extrapolated and his anger with his father is more prominent than the idealisation that makes him want to follow in the old man's footsteps. I know where the story is coming from, because it is such a classic story, but I would have preferred to actually see it on the screen instead of inferring it.

Basically, a clearer emotional progression was needed for Danny and frankly, I didn't find Charlie likable enough for his place in the story to function. He's despicable, but he should be charmingly despicable and I was not convinced he was charming.

Reviewed by charlytully 5 / 10

With a dad like this . . .

. . . who needs enemies? The focus of THE H!TMAN DIARIES, Charlie Valentine (played by Raymond J. Barry) is supposed to be such a charming mobster that no one realizes that the old cliché, "I kill everything I touch" (which he actually paraphrases at this story's close), literally sums up his life. Charlie is a magic one-trick pony, meaning he never learns from his mistakes, and tries to pull off the same tired old scheme of ripping off mob bagmen time after time. The crews he assembles to help him are more the 1960s equivalent of "F TROOP" than "OCEAN'S ELEVEN" of the Dean Martin era. Charlie's haphazardly sketched out ploys are a perfect match to the bumbling idiots he recruits to carry them out. Charlie's magic touch is that his entire gang always gets rubbed out while he himself makes a clean escape in his mob heist target's most distinctive automobile. To call this nonsense implausible is probably being too charitable. When Charlie recruits his only child (who is obviously on the super-slow side) into his circle of doom in the second half of DIARIES, this flick slips from being merely annoying to becoming a mean-spirited wallow in bathos. I'd hate to be writer\director Jesse V. Johnson's dad.

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