Butch "Bullet" Stein, a Jewish junkie from the mean streets of Brooklyn, is paroled after eight years in prison. Butch rips off a runner for local drug dealer, Tank, and is soon right back into his old habit of snorting coke and shooting up heroin with his best friend Lester. Enraged by Butch's affront and already determined to get revenge on him for a past wrong, Tank sets about getting even with his old enemy by hiring a hulking brute, Gates, to beat Butch. When the confrontation occurs, however, Gates breaks his hand on the battle-hardened Butch. Besides Lester, the only people in Butch's corner are his two brothers, the mentally-unhinged Vietnam War veteran Louis and aspiring artist Ruby, neither of whom can be counted on to help him in the inevitable showdown.
Fresh from prison Butch 'Bullet' Stein (Mickey Rourke), a Jewish ex-convict with sticky fingers and some nasty drug habits, moves back in with his parents and two brothers. His eldest brother Louis (Ted Levine) is a Vietnam war veteran with a severe case of post-traumatic stress, which keeps him locked up in his room-fortress and reliving his experiences. The youngest is Ruby (Adrien Brody), the artistic soul of the family, a talented street artist misunderstood by his parents, but loved and cherished by both his brothers. On release Butch however goes back to his old ways of stealing (from his neighbours or from drug dealers) and is quick to remind about his presence to former foes. Among them local drug lord Tank (Tupac Shakur)...
Famed more for this being the last movie done by Tupac Shakury, than for its actual quality, "Bullet" is a movie overladen by this burden. Within the confines of a chaotic script lies an engaging story, but one that is dragged down by overly rash plotting and over-the-top characters, which threaten to turn the movie into a farce. Nonetheless the three lead roles are masterfully captioned by Rourke, Brody and Levine, each rather memorable with their strong respective presence. Especially the first is tour de force, showing off some of his intricate acting capabilities, which self-detonated during the nineties to throttle him to relative anonymity. Bullet is strong macho persona thrust in between worlds, but controlled by his crack lifestyle. At the same time after his time in prison he is unable to cope with his homosexual tendencies, released during his stay behind bars, whereas the movie suggests more than it explicitly states about his penitentiary experiences. These chaotic character traits deliver a crisp persona with which we are invited to venture into the life of Bullet and his surroundings.
However thrust on top of the story are several themes, which cause it to lose focus. Especially the whole ordeal with Tank meanders through some poor plotting to come to an unsatisfying conclusion. Unfortunately for Shakur his final role wasn't exactly one worth being remembered by. The movie however in general jumps around, at times uncontrollably, as if unable to really envisage whether it has a message or is just another street crime story with no purpose. If there's one word to describe this film it's - underrated. I must admit when I first seen this movie in the store, I was surprised I hadn't heard of it and I'm glad I got this little bargain bin gem. I'm a fan of gangster movies in general, in particular films in the 90's, and if you liked those type of movies I would recommend this film. The film does have a dark, gritty feel to it and Mickey Rourke really does a good job in this film as well as 2pac as the villain. This movie may seem like an action film, but its more a crime Drama as it has some depth and seriousness to it in terms of plot and characters.for what it is it's a good straight to video flick with a great cast (notice a young adrien brody and Donnie Wahlberg).Its definitely worth a watch.
Overall : 7/10 The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. It is assumed that no one who is diligently avoiding spoilers will be visiting this page in the first place. In order to secure the R-rating, some cuts in terms of violence and sexual content had to be made. The unrated version of the film has them back in. 646f9e108c
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