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Uh, yeah. Very little of this film worked for me.
The dialogue was horrendous, made several degrees worse by Pacino delivering one of the most bizarre performances I've ever seen from him. It's not forgivable, especially considering the acting he's proven he can do, and that the character he's playing is little more than the well-trodden, workaholic cop with messy home life.
DeNiro was better, although he created a character so completely incapable of chemistry or romance that his relationship with Edie doesn't make a lick of sense throughout the entire film. Honestly, he doesn't even smile at her, they just fire off questions as if they're in some two-way interrogation–no back and forth–and after they've extracted enough information from each other they decide to start making out. What?
Other than the fact that I didn't find either of the main characters worthy of empathy, which is sort of huge, the film tried to go way too big. There are too many supporting characters and side stories, most of which are unnecessary and jarringly spliced in, and because of it few of the scenes flow at all. It would have been okay if the plot was competent enough to keep track of everything it introduces, but the pacing completely misappropriates its time. The result: the few great stories with some promise, which only needed patience to be masterfully developed, were severely truncated. As another commenter previously mentioned, what the hell happened to Val Kilmer? I guess that one scene was supposed to imply him leaving forever, despite the entire movie insisting that his wife meant everything to him?
Apart from a tiny handful of great scenes and shots that were well composed, Heat doesn't earn that much redemption. The score had the tendency to be both out of place and in your face, all the characters seemed to live in confusingly similar houses, and the movie had two obnoxious cases of "just forcibly embrace the rightfully emotional women until they do what you want."
Ultimately, I don't know how a film could drag so severely and still have such attention deficit, but this poorly executed mess manages to pull it off. Worth watching if you don't like DeNiro having emotions, enjoy Pacino speaking as though he's always on cocaine, and get off on watching male characters assert their dominance by randomly breaking shit in bursts of spontaneous and unprovoked anger.
Saw this again this weekend, for the first time since it originally played in the theaters over here. It has stood the test of time very well, I think. I myself have not, and had to split it over two nights.
freaking awesome movie, just WOW
the scene where pacino and de niro in the restaurant, never thought two people dining together might be more awesome and goosebump inducing than many of the action scenes in other movies
to see which of your friends have seen this movie!
In 18 official lists
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This movie ranks #22 in Action
This movie ranks #32 in 1990s
This movie ranks #34 in Thriller
This movie ranks #37 in MovieSense 101
This movie ranks #38 in Crime
This movie ranks #38 in Empire 500
This movie ranks #54 in FilmTotaal top 100
This movie ranks #125 in Top 250
This movie ranks #129 in Reddit top 250
This movie ranks #185 in FOK! top 250
This movie ranks #375 in They Shoot Pictures, Don't They?
This movie ranks #399 in The Guardian's 1000 Films to See Before You Die
This movie ranks #419 in TimeOut's 1000 Films to Change Your Life
This movie ranks #453 in The Story of Film: An Odyssey
This movie ranks #689 in More Noirs from TSPDT
This movie ranks #707 in Sight and Sound 2012 - Combined List
This movie ranks #891 in 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die
This movie ranks #945 in Have You Seen? A Personal Introduction to 1,000 Films