What was it like to be Martin Scorsese on Oscar night in 1981? Think on it: you’re Marty; you’ve just made Raging Bull; you and everyone else know it’s a masterpiece – but Ordinary People wins Best Picture. Do you: a) Rip Bob Redford’s lousy throat out? b) Gouge his eyes a little first? or c) Clap along with all the other saps? Bear in mind your movie is, definitely, a masterpiece. And you’re probably coked to the gills tonight. You may or may not be sleeping with Liza Minnelli (I can’t remember who you were sleeping with in ’81). Whatever’s goin’ on, the Sundance Kid deserves a slap. Oh Marty. And to think: you lose to Kevin Costner in ten years.
What a hoary load of bullshit this movie is. Are movies like this made to keep old actors busy? Is this the movie equivalent of an allotment or Neighbourhood Watch scheme? It’s easier to picture it that way; some feelings of sympathy might even arise in me if I could see this as two old men pottering about, amusing themselves. Maybe if they’d both stop dyeing their hair I might even be tempted not to stick the boot in. But Righteous Kill is a noxious, ego-fuelled, cliché-ridden, misogynist fire-hazard of a movie, and Bob De Niro and his little buddy Al should be ashamed of themselves. From Taxi Driver and Serpico to this in three decades takes some (un)doing.