Review: Dominik’s ‘Killing Them Softly’ Drives Message Hard and Well

The first word we hear someone speak in director Andrew Dominik’s Killing Them Softly is President Obama saying the word “America.” The 2008 presidential election is a strange stage to set for a movie about the Mob or whatever it has become in modern times, but Killing Them Softly is a fresh take on the American gangster film, blending a hard-edged story about violent men doing violent things to improve their status with a corporatizing theme that sits like jagged bricks. The film is by no means subtle, however, the best gangster movies aren’t, and Brad Pitt’s lead hitman character Jackie Cogan is one for the ages. Read on! Cogan is an enforcer who prides himself on being the best at what he does. He’s of a bygone era where people smoke and organized crime handled situations the old fashioned way, usually resulting in spilled blood. But when a card game …

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